First Reserve Corporation to Open Hong Kong Office
GREENWICH, Conn., HOUSTON, LONDON and HONG KONG, Feb. 8, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- First Reserve Corporation, the world's leading energy industry private equity firm with US$20 billion of equity in its active buyout funds, today announced the formation of First Reserve Asia Limited and the opening of an office in Hong Kong in February 2011. The development recognizes the growing importance of Asia to the energy industry, an investment theme long-reflected in First Reserve's portfolio. The firm has appointed Jamie Paton as Managing Director to lead the effort and Allen Gu as Director. Existing First Reserve investment professionals will also relocate to Hong Kong in the year ahead.
Jamie Paton has over 20 years of experience in the industry having held senior positions at 3i and recently at Candover Asia, where he worked closely with Allen Gu. Mr. Paton has been based in Hong Kong for the past 10 years.
"We are excited that Jamie and Allen have joined the First Reserve team and believe that their combined expertise in the Asian markets will position us well to take advantage of the tremendous opportunities we see in the region," said William E. Macaulay, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of First Reserve Corporation. "Energy demand and intensity continues to increase in Asia. We believe that the fastest rates of growth from urbanization and industrialization are in the emerging economies, and so the resources supplying those economies and the resulting need for energy services and infrastructure in these markets are of great interest to us and our portfolio companies."
Jamie Paton, Managing Director of First Reserve Asia Limited added, "I'm enthusiastic about the opportunity to expand First Reserve's presence and to be involved in this strategic initiative of the firm at such a critical inflection point for Asian energy markets."
Throughout the past decade, First Reserve has been an established investor in the Asia-Pacific region across the energy spectrum. Former and current portfolio companies are found in China, Singapore, India and Australia. Former companies include Beijing-based Asian American Coal, Inc. and Asian Energy Holdings, which focus on coal and coal seam gas. Current holdings include: Singapore-based KrisEnergy, which is engaged in oil and gas exploration, development and production; Pune-based Kenersys, a wind turbine manufacturer and marketer; and two Brisbane-based companies, Connect Resource Services, engaged in mining services in Australia and Mongolia; and Southern Cross, which has extensive coal holdings in the region including publicly-listed Whitehaven Coal Limited (ASX: WHC). First Reserve continues to hold a position acquired pre-IPO in China Coal (HK: 1898), the second largest coal company in China.
First Reserve has taken portfolio companies public on 10 exchanges across five continents including Asia and Australia.
For 2011, First Reserve's 30 portfolio companies are expected to have US$208 billion in revenues and US$15 billion of operating earnings (EBITDA). First Reserve controlled portfolio companies currently employ approximately 35,000 people in 40 countries where energy is produced and consumed throughout the world.
Jamie Paton's responsibilities range from deal origination and structuring to due diligence, execution and monitoring, and include leadership of the Hong Kong office and business development in Asia. Prior to joining First Reserve, he was a Senior Advisor at AEA Investors (Asia) and previously, Mr. Paton was the Head of Asia for Candover Investments plc, where he was responsible for establishing Candover's operations in Asia and managing investment and business development activities in the region. Prior to Candover, he was a Partner in 3i's Global Growth Capital business, where he was responsible for 3i's presence in North Asia and where he co-led 3i's Asia program. Mr. Paton holds a B.Sc. in Civil Engineering and qualified as a Chartered Accountant with KPMG.Allen Gu's responsibilities range from deal origination and structuring to due diligence, execution and monitoring and include business development. Prior to joining First Reserve, he was a Vice President at Candover Asia, where he was responsible for origination and execution of investments in China. Previously, Mr. Gu held positions at Morgan Stanley Private Equity Asia and Goldman Sachs. Mr. Gu holds a B.S. in Electrical Engineering (with Distinction) from Purdue University and an M.B.A. from UCLA Anderson School of Management. He also studied at Tsinghua University in Beijing.