European Capital

European Capital Invests Euro 142 Million and Supports Growth in Buyout Investments in Q1 2008

    St. Peter Port, Guernsey (ots/PRNewswire) -

    European Capital Limited (LSE: ECAS) ("European Capital"), announced that in the first quarter of 2008 it supported the growth of its portfolio companies through four add-on acquisitions:

@@start.t1@@      -- Wakame: Add-on to Marco Polo Foods, European manufacturer of fresh and
          frozen sushi, completed in January.  European Capital invested euro 29
          million in the One Stop Buyout(TM) of Marco Polo in November 2005. In
          June 2006, European Capital syndicated an euro 11 million senior term
          loan and euro 1.2 million in equity.
      -- Velay Bernard: Add-on to Soflog-Telis, provider of logistics services
          to industrial customers, completed in February.  European Capital
          invested euro 29 million in the buyout of Soflog-Telis in September
          2007.
      -- Net-linx publishing solutions and Datamatix: Add-ons to Miles 33,
          leading UK provider of editorial and advertising software to newspaper
          customers worldwide, completed in March. European Capital invested
          euro 83 million in the buyout of Miles 33 in June 2007.@@end@@

    "Our buyouts team continues to actively pursue the most attractive investment opportunities across Europe, displaying our commitment to support leading middle market companies," said Ira Wagner, President of European Capital Financial Services. "With approximately euro 3 billion invested in more than 80 middle market companies, our team has been very active over the last three years in order to provide global and flexible financing solutions for our own One-Stop Buyouts(TM) and to our investment partners all over Europe."

    In the first quarter of 2008, European Capital invested a total of euro 142 million in five companies, compared to euro 267 million invested in ten companies in the first quarter of 2007. European Capital raised over euro 520 million in capital in the first quarter of 2008, compared to euro 47 million raised in the first quarter of 2007 and euro 518 million in all of 2007. In addition, European Capital realized euro 115 million from investments in the first quarter of 2008, compared to euro 163 million in the first quarter of 2007 and euro 707 million in all of 2007; a portion of these funds are available for reinvestment.

    European Capital also invested euro 142 million in five companies in the first quarter of 2008:

@@start.t2@@      -- Bestinvest: Independent financial advisor; investment of euro 18
          million in senior subordinated debt, shareholder loans and common
          equity in January.
      -- Inspicio plc: Testing, inspection and certification services in the
          Commodities, Environmental and Food Safety markets; investment of
          euro 47 million senior subordinated debt in February.
      -- Tiama: In-line inspection devices for product quality control;
          investment of euro 14 million mezzanine debt completed in
          February.
      -- Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (API): Division of Alpharma Inc.
          (NYSE: ALO); investment of euro 35 million senior subordinated debt in
          March.
      -- International Electronics and Engineering S.A. (IEE): In-line
          inspection devices for product quality control; investment of euro 28
          million mezzanine debt in March.@@end@@

    In total, European Capital has invested over euro 1.5 billion in 2007 and over euro 1.5 billion in the last twelve months.

    European Capital Financial Services' Frankfurt office, which opened in April 2007, actively covers markets in the German speaking countries and is currently reviewing numerous opportunities. European Capital Financial Services' Madrid office, which opened in July 2007, actively covers markets in Southern Europe and is currently reviewing numerous opportunities.

    "The first quarter of 2008 continued to present attractive investment opportunities for European Capital," said Jean Eichenlaub, Regional Managing Director of European Capital Financial Services. "We have strongly increased our market coverage and have been particularly active in the mezzanine market."

    "European Capital's growing reputation, our international presence and ability to provide one-stop financing of mezzanine debt and equity in support of private equity buyouts gives us a competitive advantage relative to other financing sources," said Nathalie Faure-Beaulieu, Regional Managing Director of European Capital Financial Services.

    For more information about European Capital's portfolio, go to http://www.EuropeanCapital.com/our_portfolio/portfolio.html

    ABOUT EUROPEAN CAPITAL

    European Capital is a publicly traded investment company for pan-European equity, mezzanine and senior debt investments with capital resources of approximately euro 2.8 billion (US$4.4 billion). It is managed by European Capital Financial Services (Guernsey) Limited ("ECFSG" or "the Investment Manager"), a wholly-owned affiliate of American Capital Strategies, Ltd ("American Capital").

    European Capital invests in and sponsors management and employee buyouts, invests in private equity buyouts and provides capital directly to private and public companies headquartered predominantly in Europe. European Capital generally invests between euro 5 million and euro 500 million per transaction in equity, mezzanine debt and senior debt to fund growth, acquisitions and recapitalizations.

    The investment objective of European Capital is to provide investors with dividend income and the potential for share value appreciation by investing in debt and equity investments in private and public companies headquartered primarily in Europe. European Capital seeks to achieve this through pursuing the following types of investments:

@@start.t3@@      European Capital One Stop Buyouts(TM)
      Through our One Stop Buyouts(TM), European Capital provides equity,
      mezzanine debt and senior debt as the lead investor in the buyout of
      private and public companies.
      Mezzanine Direct with Sponsors
      European Capital provides one stop financing of subordinated debt and
      equity for buyouts sponsored by private equity firms where European
      Capital is either the sole or lead mezzanine debt investor.
      Syndicated Mezzanine and Senior Debt
      European Capital provides mezzanine financing for buyouts sponsored by
      private equity firms where European Capital is neither the sole nor lead
      mezzanine or senior debt investor.
      Direct Investments
      European Capital provides subordinated debt and equity financing directly
      to private and public companies, which is used for growth, acquisitions or
      recapitalizations, and investing in structured finance vehicles.@@end@@

    Companies interested in learning more about European Capital's flexible financing should contact Nathalie Faure Beaulieu at +44-0-20-7539-7000 in London, Jean Eichenlaub at +33-0-1-40-68-06-66 in Paris, Robert von Finckenstein at +49-0-69-71-71-297-0 in Frankfurt, or Luis Felipe Castellanos at +34-91-423-27-60 in Madrid, or visit the website at http://www.EuropeanCapital.com.

    ABOUT AMERICAN CAPITAL

    American Capital is the only private equity fund and the largest alternative asset management company that is a member of the S&P 500. With US$19 billion in capital resources under management, American Capital is the largest U.S. publicly traded alternative asset manager. American Capital, both directly and through its global asset management business, is an investor in management and employee buyouts, private equity buyouts, and early stage and mature private and public companies. American Capital provides senior debt, mezzanine debt and equity to fund growth, acquisitions, recapitalizations and securitizations. American Capital and its affiliates invest from US$5 million to US$800 million per company in North America and Euro 5 million to euro 500 million per company in Europe.

    As of March 31, 2008, American Capital shareholders have enjoyed a total return of 490% since the Company's IPO -- an annualized return of 18%, assuming reinvestment of dividends. American Capital has paid a total of US$2.3 billion in dividends and paid US$27.17 dividends per share since going public in August 1997 at US$15 per share.

    Companies interested in learning more about American Capital's flexible financing should contact Mark Opel, Senior Vice President, Business Development, at +1-800-248-9340, or visit http://www.AmericanCapital.com or http://www.EuropeanCapital.com.

    Performance data quoted above represents past performance of American Capital. Past performance does not guarantee future results and the investment return and principal value of an investment in American Capital will likely fluctuate. Consequently, an investor's shares, when sold, may be worth more or less than their original cost. Additionally, American Capital's current performance may be lower or higher than the performance data quoted above.

    This press release contains forward-looking statements. The statements regarding expected results of American Capital are subject to various factors and uncertainties, including the uncertainties associated with the timing of transaction closings, changes in interest rates, availability of transactions, changes in regional, national or international economic conditions, or changes in the conditions of the industries in which American Capital has made investments.

      Web site: http://www.EuropeanCapital.com
                      http://www.AmericanCapital.com

ots Originaltext: European Capital
Im Internet recherchierbar: http://www.presseportal.ch

Contact:
Ira Wagner, President, European Capital Financial Services,
+44-20-7539-7000; Jean Eichenlaub, Regional Managing Director
Southern Europe, European Capital Financial Services,
+33-1-40-68-68-66; Nathalie Faure-Beaulieu, Regional Managing
Director Northern Europe, European Capital Financial Services,
+44-20-7539-7000; or Shona Prendergast of Penrose Public Relations,
+44-20-7786-4888, all for European Capital Limited



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