General Atlantic Hires Advent’s Crawford for Retail Investments

General Atlantic LLC, the private-equity firm with stakes in Tory Burch LLC and Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., hired Andrew Crawford from Advent International Corp. to head retail and consumer deals as investment in the sector increases.

Crawford will be a managing director in New York. He was previously a principal at Advent working with Lululemon Athletica Inc. and helping lead an investment in Bojangles’ Restaurants Inc., General Atlantic said today in a statement. The Greenwich, Connecticut-based firm, which has $17 billion under management, has announced eight investments this year, including in a Mexican pharmaceuticals company and a Chinese beauty products retailer.

Private-equity deals in consumer companies have risen 57 percent to $31.9 billion so far this year, compared with the same period in 2013, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Lululemon, the yogawear company, has climbed this week amid speculation that founder Chip Wilson will push for a sale, including to a private-equity firm. The Vancouver-based company has a market capitalization of about $6 billion.

“Andy’s investing acumen, retail and consumer expertise and leadership qualities will be a significant addition to our team,” General Atlantic’s Chief Executive Officer William Ford said in the statement.

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