Eurazeo Said to Consider Expanding Into North American Buyouts

Eurazeo SA, one of Europe’s largest publicly traded investment firms, is considering expanding its business to target buyouts in North America, according to two people with knowledge of the matter.

The company, the owner of stakes in fashion group Desigual and AccorHotels, is looking at options including opening an office in New York or buying another private-equity firm, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the deliberations are private. Discussions are at an early stage and the Paris-based company may opt against the move, they said.

European private-equity firms including BC Partners and EQT Partners have expanded into the U.S. to tap the world’s largest economy. Cinven, based in London, opened an office in New York to support its portfolio of companies earlier this year.

Eurazeo, which invests in companies across western Europe, has been expanding through acquisition. The company was formed through the merger of Azeo and Eurafrance in 2001 and it agreed to buy peer manager OFI Private Equity ten years later, giving it a platform to make smaller investments.

A spokeswoman for Eurazeo declined to comment.