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3 Family Offices Investing in Aerospace


In utilizing the FINTRX family office data and research platform, which provides intel into thousands of direct deal transactions made by 3,000+ family offices around the world, we explore three family offices making direct investments in the aerospace sector. As one of the largest sectors in the United States, aerospace refers to those providing products and services to the military aircraft, missile, space, commercial airline, and general aviation markets.

1. Bavarian Capital Management

Established in 2001, Bavarian Capital Management is a München, Germany-based single-family office managing the wealth of its founder, Niko Dimitrov, and his family. Dimitrov created his wealth through an extensive career in finance, beginning as an analyst with Kidder Peabody & Co, in the early 1980s. Throughout the mid-80s and early 90s, Dimitrov worked within the high-net-worth branch at Morgan Stanley in London, when he began making several private investments.

Today, Bavarian Capital Management allocates to several investment opportunities, including public equities, commodities, private equity, venture capital, real estate, and direct investments - among others. Throughout the early 2000s, the firm was heavily active in public equities, CFDs, option strategies, and currency trading. Around 2018, Bavarian Capital Management began focusing on the vast majority of its efforts in the venture capital and private equity spaces.

When investing directly, Bavarian Capital Management allocates to a range of deal sizes and stages with a focus on later-stage companies. The firm remains sector agnostic and regularly partakes in transactions throughout the aerospace, e-commerce, technology, fashion, consumer goods, communication, healthcare, and food and beverage sectors. In March 2019, Bavarian Capital Management directly invested in Mynaric, a German manufacturer of laser communication equipment for airborne and space-borne communication networks. Bavarian Capital Management regularly looks to co-invest alongside like-minded family offices, institutional and individual investors.

2. Copley Equity Partners  

Established in 2012, Copley Equity Partners is a Quincy, MA-based single-family office (with an additional office in Denver, CO) serving as the private investment arm for Rob Hale and his family. Rob Hale is a Boston-based entrepreneur and founder of Granite Telecommunications, one of the largest, privately-held telecommunications companies in the United States. In 2012, Hale became a partial owner of the National Basketball Association's Boston Celtics and a partial owner of the Major League Lacrosse team, the Boston Cannons. Rob and the Hale family are heavily involved in philanthropy and charity throughout the Boston area and served as a member of the Board of Trustees for Boston Children's Hospital, the South Shore YMCA, the Massachusetts Soldiers Legacy Fund, and the Brigham and Women's Hospital. Regarding the firm's investments, Copley Equity Partners make direct investments into established companies operating in the lower-middle markets. The firm targets groups with significant growth potential operating in a range of sectors and industries, including aerospace, aeronautics, business, and financial services, manufacturing, automation, communications, and healthcare - among others.

Copley Equity Partners targets companies operating as leaders within fragmented markets that have clear potential for growth. In October 2020, Copley Equity Partners made a direct investment in Aethon Aerial Solutions (part of Aethon Holdings), a privately-held aerospace company with over 100 years of collective experience in airborne LiDAR and remote sensing for commercial industrial and defense applications (manned and unmanned aerial imaging). In January 2021, Copley Equity Partners directly invested in ETA Global, a Charlotte, North Carolina-based company delivering fasteners, hardware, and consumables to the aerospace and defense industries. Besides active board participation, Copley Equity Partners also assists its portfolio companies in several areas, including talent recruitment, business metrics, corporate governance, debt and equity capital, strategic partnerships, geographic expansion, and acquisitions. 

3. Marc Bell Capital

Established in 2003, Marc Bell Capital is a Boca Raton, Florida-based single-family office serving as the investment vehicle for Marc Bell. Bell is an American entrepreneur who has founded and managed several ventures throughout his career, including Globix Corporation, Javelin Mortgage Investment Corp., Armour Residential REIT Inc., The College Watch Company and PredaSAR (Synthetic Radar Solutions). Today, Marc Bell Capital invests in a range of asset classes including venture capital, private equity, real estate, and hedge funds. Regarding venture capital, the firm seeks angel and early-stage investment between $1K to $250K. The firm's venture capital investments are primarily focused on aerospace technologies and companies.

Outside of venture capital, the firm typically seeks investments between $1M to $50M. For private equity investments, Marc Bell Capital targets market-leading companies with long-term growth potential and strong management teams. Typical transaction types include distressed debt, debtor-in-possession, special situations, expansion capital, mezzanine debt, bridge loans, management buyouts, and recapitalizations. Marc Bell Capital makes both direct and indirect investments and allocates to various industries, including aerospace, finance, media and entertainment, technology, manufacturing, business services, education, food and beverage, e-commerce, retail, and healthcare - among others.

In January 2015, the group made a direct investment in Vayu Inc., a privately-held aerospace company in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Vayu builds affordable unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) for cargo transport over difficult terrain designed for rural healthcare supply chains and post-disaster aid delivery. Committed to manufacturing aircraft rooted in safety, innovation, and reliability, Vayu continues to positively impact existing supply chains and the UAV market altogether.

In June 2017, Marc Bell Capital made a direct investment in Vector Launch, an American space technology company that aims to launch suborbital and orbital payloads. In May 2018, Marc Bell Capital directly invested in Iceye, a Finnish microsatellite manufacturer founded in 2014. Marc Bell Capital will make impact/ESG investments and considers all strategies on an opportunistic basis. 

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