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CVC names ex-Affinity Equity top manager as Korea head

By May 07, 2021 (Gmt+09:00)

Chris Rhee was named as the Korean office head of CVC Capital Partners
Chris Rhee was named as the Korean office head of CVC Capital Partners
CVC Capital Partners has appointed Chris Rhee, a former partner of Affinity Equity Partners, as its Seoul office head and global partner, according to the London-based private equity firm on May 7. 

During his stint at Hong Kong-based Affinity, Lee had made headlines with 1.2 trillion won ($1 billion) in gains from the exit of Korea's Loen Entertainment, or six multiple returns, in two and a half years. It sold a majority stake in the music streaming service to mobile platform Kakao Corp. for 1.9 trillion won in 2016.

Rhee, 47, had also spearheaded investments in the e-commerce spin-off of Shinsegae Inc., SSG.Com and the food storage maker Lock&Lock.

After graduating from Yale University and the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, he had worked as a senior consultant at PwC and an executive director of UBS Investment Bank.

He replaced Chung Myung-hoon who has just moved to one of CVC's portfolio companies -- Yeogi Eottae, a hotel and mobile-ticket booking platform -- as CEO.

CVC said in a statement that "Korea is central to CVC’s plans in Asia as the team is a strong pipeline and are actively pursuing a number of interesting opportunities with the appointment of Chris Rhee." 

CVC manages $161.9 billion in assets with 23 offices around the world. Its fifth Asia-focused fund raised $4.5 billion at its final close in April last year, which has executed $1.5 billion worth of investments in eight deals so far.

In March, CVC lost to Affinity Equity in the final bidding for South Korea’s top recruitment portal JobKorea, in a deal worth about 900 billion won. TPG Capital and MBK Partners had also competed for the online platform.

(Amended on May 10 to drop the title of head of Korean operations)

Write to Jun-ho Cha at chacha@hankyung.com

Yeonhee Kim edited this article.

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