A Historical Perspective on Investing With Vision
CEA’s interest in private equity stemmed from our successful managed investments, our financial services activities and from our desire to institutionalize the investment process, while at the same time, employing dedicated capital and taking advantage of proprietary deal flow.
By the late 1980’s, CEA commenced with international business. In doing, we found that many of the international media, communications, and entertainment opportunities involved either very large companies, many of which were state-controlled, or smaller entrepreneurial companies in need of a global perspective on content, technology, and business relationships.
For a small US company, it was initially extraordinarily difficult to win international mandates on a fee-for-services basis. Overcoming this obstacle required a merchant banking approach to establishing a beachhead in the international community of investment banking and corporate finance. This involved acting as advisor, sponsor and/or investor; and one good way to do this was to establish a co-managed private equity fund with Baring Brothers in Europe. In 1993, CEA established its first private equity fund in Europe combining Baring’s prestigious merchant banking reputation with CEA’s industry knowledge and global perspective.