Carlos Vara is one of the founding partner at VACE Partners. Carlos has over 25 years of investment banking experience. Mr. Vara currently serves on the Board of Directors of relevant Mexican companies such as Grupo Gigante, José Cuervo, Genomma Lab, Hoteles Presidente, and FHipo. He also serves as member of the Finance Committee of Grupo Gigante and as President of the Development Committee of Hoteles Presidente. Previously, he also served as a member of both Aeromexico’s Board of Directors and Finance Committee.
Carlos has participated in the origination and execution of M&A transactions in diverse industries with an aggregate value of more than US$100 billion and capital markets transactions of more than US$50 billion.
In M&A he has participated in the advisory to Cuervo in the acquisition of Three Olives and Bushmills and in the sale of Tequila Don Julio; to Gigante in their divestiture to Soriana; to Nacional Financiera’s toll roads privatization (FARAC I); to a consortium of Mexican investors in the acquisition of Aeromexico; to Grupo Imsa in the sale of a 43.3% stake; to Cemex in the acquisitions of Southdown, RMC, and Rinker; to America Móvil in the acquisitions of AMTEL, BSE, BCD and America Movil’s spin-off from Telmex (around US$50 bn of aggregate transaction value advised to AMX); to Kimberly Clark in the sale of its consumer products division (Scribe); to Grupo Chedraui in the acquisition of Carrefour Mexico; to AHISA in its sale to Metlife; to PBG in the acquisition of Pepsi Gemex; to Associated British Foods (ABF) in the acquisition of Capullo; to BBV in the acquisition of Bancomer; to Citigroup in the acquisition of Banamex; and to Aegon in the acquisition of a 50% stake in Seguros and Afore Banamex, among others.
He has also played a leading role in many Mexican landmark equity transactions such as OMA’s IPO in 2006, Femsa’s secondary offering in 2005, SPCC’s secondary offering in 2005, Cemex’s secondary offering in 2003 and again in 2005, and Grupo Televisa’s secondary offering in 2001.
In terms of Debt Capital Markets, some of the most relevant transactions that Carlos participated in were: the first ever perpetual bond offering issued by a Mexican company (Pemex, 2004), the first ever guaranteed bond for a Mexican company (Vitro, 2003), and the first ever 30-year issuance for a non-investment company (Southern Copper Corporation), among others. In addition, Carlos has brought a series of new Mexican names for their first debt issuance to the markets such as Cuervo, Xignux, CIE, Posadas, Prenda Facil, and others. He also played a key role in the Debt Restructuring of DESC, Grupo Gigante, and TFM.
Before founding VACE Partnes, Carlos worked for 9 years at Citigroup as head of the Mexico and Latin America Investment Banking team. Previously, from 1996 to 2000, he worked for McKinsey as a consultant in several offices, including Mexico City, Caracas, Lisbon, Madrid, and New York. While working with McKinsey, Carlos advised the BMV on the conversion to an electronic trading platform and on the creation of MexDer.
Carlos holds a B.S. in Economics from the Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México (ITAM), a M.S. in Economics from Yale University, and an MBA from the Yale School of Management.
Ricardo Cervera is one of the founding partners at VACE Partners. Prior to founding VACE, Ricardo worked for over 9 years at Salomon Brothers, Salomon Smith Barney and Citigroup. Overall, Mr. Cervera has over 20 years of Investment Banking experience.
Ricardo joined the Investment Banking Division of Salomon Brothers (which became Salomon Smith Barney) in 1999 as an associate. He spent seven years in New York in the Global Power Group, covering US, European and Latin American power companies. Mr. Cervera was transferred to Citigroup’s Mexico Investment Banking Office as a Director in 2006, with coverage responsibilities in the power, energy, infrastructure, consumer, retail, industrial and other sectors. Upon arriving to Mexico, he led the privatization of the first Toll-Roads from FARAC worth over US$4 billion; one of the largest privatizations ever in this sector worldwide and winner of Project Finance Latam Deal of the Year in 2008. Ricardo was Head of Citigroup’s Investment Banking office in Mexico during 2007 and 2008.
Ricardo has participated in multiple capital markets transactions, raising over US$50 billion in proceeds, including transactions for US multi-billion dollar companies, such as FirstEnergy’s US$1 billion equity offering and ConEdison’s US$500 million debt offering. He has also helped Mexican companies raise capital in transactions such as the IPO for Cuervo for $915 million, a bond offering for Office Depot ($400 million) and an FRN issuance for America Movil ($500 million). Ricardo led VACE’s effort in the $5,500 million pesos debt structuring of OHL’s Viaducto Bicentenario, which was awarded Project Finance Latam IPP Deal of the Year in 2010.
Mr. Cervera has extensive experience in M&A, having led the execution of multiple landmark deals in the US, Europe, Mexico and South America, including the acquisition of power generation assets from FPL, the advisory to Aquila on its proxy contest to acquire control of Quanta Services’ Board of Directors, the sale of Elektra Noreste in Panama, the acquisition of Transportadora de Electricidad in Bolivia, the ownership restructuring of Light in Brazil and the sale of Grupo Gigante in Mexico.
At VACE, Ricardo has led over 25 M&A transactions for companies such as Grupo Financiero Interacciones, Cuervo, Lala, Office Depot, Grupo Kuo, Grupo Presidente, Ventura Capital, BAC Credomatic, Gruma, Sico, Farmacias del Ahorro, amongst others.
Ricardo currently serves on the Board of Directors of José Cuervo (BMV: CUERVO) and as member of its Audit Committee, Procorp SAB de CV (BMV: PROCORPB), Yale School of Management Mexico Board, Maven Global (UK), Samba Smoothie, on the Technical Committee of Fondo Capital Infraestructura (BMV: FCICK16), and as a Founding Shareholder and Board Member of Concentradora Hipotecaria (BMV: FHIPO).
Philanthropically, Ricardo is the Founder and Chairman of the Board of Fundacion VACE, A.C., Trustee and Treasurer of Conexiones para Aprender A.C., and Trustee of Mingei International Museum in California.
From 1995 to 1996, Ricardo worked in Mexico’s Ministry of Finance as an advisor to the General Director of Public Credit and in 1997 became advisor to the Deputy Minister of Finance.
Ricardo graduated with High Honors, in the top 1% of his class, with a B.A. in Economics from the Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México (ITAM) and received an M.B.A. from Yale University. In 1998, Ricardo received Mexico’s National Award in Economic Research presented by BANAMEX.
Ricardo lives in Mexico and California with his wife Lilian and their 5 children.
Alfredo Vara is a partner at VACE Partners. Before joining Vace Partners Alfredo worked for Deutsche Bank’s Latin American Global Market Sales Group where he joined since 2005. Mr. Vara’s main responsibility since joining the bank was financial institution coverage for a full range of products; he also was the head of the Debt Local Capital Markets effort in Mexico, and form part of the debt structuring in México including all private and public securitizations.
Before joining Deutsche Bank, Mr. Vara occupied very senior positions while working for the Mexican government. Mr. Vara boasts a wide rang of experience in the financial sector in Mexico. He was responsible for developing a new floating rate debt market, created and developed an internal debt market obtaining Standard & Poor’s government debt grade. Issuance and placement of debt instruments denominated “Bonos de Protección al Ahorro” (BPA’s and BPAT) up to 32 billion USD. He also was responsible of managing financial institutions sales (concluded Banca Promex Strengthening Program acquired by Bancomer, concluded Banco del Atlántico Strengthening Program and formalization process that lead to the transfer of Banco del Atlántico assets to Banco Internacional, coordinated and supervised the restructuring and assumption of all the operations of the intervened banks by the supervisory agency (CNBV), as well as participated in developing the schedule and processes necessary to liquidate the institutions, concluded Grupo Financiero Serfín buy audit by Santander Mexicano, supervised the financial scheme that allowed to maintain BanCrecer in operation and the formalization process that lead to the transfer of ownership of BanCrecer to Banco Mercantil del Norte, supervised AFORE Bancrecer-Dresdner auction, Initiated and coordinated the liquidating processes of Banca Quadrum, Banco Anahuac, Banco Industrial y Banco del Sureste, including a mechanism put in place in order to pay out all deposit holders, etc…), and developed risk methodologies capable of estimating martingale default probabilities. Mr. Vara was also responsible of coordinating loan operations negotiations obtaining financing from international institutions (International Bank for Reconstruction and Development & Inter-American Development Bank).
Managed resources authorized by the Expenditures Budget of the Federation, in order to support fulfillment of obligations undertaken by the Institute, as well as to implement programs to support bank savers and debtors. Before working for the government, Mr. Vara worked for three years at a structuring position at Citibank Mexico. Mr. Vara has a B.A. in Economics from the Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México. He graduated from a joint degree program at Yale University where he obtained a MPPM from Yale School of Management and a M.A. in Economics from the Graduate School.
Dan is the Co-Founder and CEO of APx Capital. Dan is regarded as a top entrepreneur in the financial services, alternative assets, distress and real estate sectors in Mexico. He has extensive experience and track record from executing landmark transactions as well as from investing and creating investment platforms in US and Latin America with a combined AUM of over US$1.8bn. Mr. Braatz is also an active LP investor through different funds and companies, acting as member and LPAC.
He currently acts as Co-Founder and Managing Partner of APx Acquisition Corp I, Sponsor and Co-Founder of Xinfra FE (Infrastructure MLP listed in the Mexican Stock Exchange), CEO of FHipo (first and only MREIT in Mexico), Yave (the largest non-bank digital mortgage lender in Mexico), VRE (a vertical residential developer) and leads APx’s structured credit and distressed asset strategies (ACCAP and FB). Dan is also a key investor in HiTo after implementing an aggressive leverage buyout that ultimately was repaid thanks to the company’s outperformance.
Dan is a board member on different companies including Grupo Gigante, FHipo, CENCOR/BIVA, Yave, Infosel, VRE and ACCap; he also holds a position as an LPAC member of YaaX Capital and other funds in which he is an investor.
Prior to APx, Dan Co-Founded VACE Partners an Investment Bank boutique in Mexico. He previously was an investment banker at Citigroup.
Jorge Torres is partner and director at VACE Partners. He has over 10 years of investment banking experience. He joined VACE Partners in 2013 and has been involved in most of the transactions that have been executed at VACE Partners almost since its inception (VACE Partners was founded in 2009),including buy-side and sell-side M&A transactions, public and private debt and equity offerings, debt restructurings, project finance, infrastructure projects, concessions, and public biddings.
He has participated in the origination and execution of multiple transactions in diverse industries such as infrastructure, financial institutions, consumer goods, industrial conglomerates, retail, spirits, manufacturing, healthcare, energy, real estate, among others.
He has executed and taken a leading role in M&A transactions with an aggregate value above US$2.5 billion in Mexico and Latin America and in the structuring of more than US$2 billion in infrastructure projects, project finance, concessions, and public biddings for Federal and State Mexican Governments. He has also participated in the structuring of more than US$3.5 billion in public and private offerings of equity, debt, and debt restructurings.
One of his landmark transactions are: execution of José Cuervo’s IPO, the largest IPO in the Mexican market and the largest IPO in the spirits industry in over 40 years, debt restructuring advisory to Grupo Gigante and the State of Sonora, sale advisory to Cuervo in the acquisition of Three Olives and Bushmills and in the sale of Tequila Don Julio and Cholula Hot Sauce, execution of Red Troncal’s public bidding process, among others.
Before joining VACE, Jorge worked at Citibanamex Corporate Banking, where he covered financial and credit analysis.
Jorge holds a B.S. in Finance from the Instituto Tecnológico de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey (ITESM). During his studies Jorge also completed two specialization courses, in Madrid, Spain and Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Rodrigo joined VACE Partners as an analyst in 2023.
Before joining VACE, Rodrigo worked in the Investment Banking & Capital Markets de Credit Suisse team as an associate. Before that, he was part of the Investment Banking de Santander team. He has experience in relevant M&A transactions, capital raising.
Rodrigo holds a bachelor’s degree in Industrial Engineering from the Universidad Iberoamericana (IBERO).
José María joined VACE Partners in 2022.
Before joining VACE Partners, José María worked as an associate in Corporate and Investment Banking at Santander where he acquired extensive experience and knowledge mainly in debt markets in Mexico. Previously, José María worked at Nexxus Capital, acquiring experience in private equity as well.
José María holds a B.S. in Economics and Finance from the Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México (ITAM) and is a CFA Charterholder.
Santiago joined VACE Partners in 2020. Since joining VACE, Santiago has participated in numerous M&A transactions with an aggregate value of ~US$1.0 bn as well as in debt restructurings and/or refinancings with an aggregate value of ~US$1.5 bn.
Santiago’s deal experience covers diverse industries including financial institutions, healthcare, retail, real estate, and others.
Before joining VACE, he worked for more than a year as a Financial Analyst at Grupo Mexgal, a controlling company of ports and transportation
enterprises in Mexico.
Santiago holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics with specialty in Finance from Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México (ITAM).
Prior to joining VACE Partners in 2022, Eduardo worked as an Analyst in Grupo Expansion, Mexico’s second-largest magazine publisher and owner of several titles such as Expansion, Quien and Life & Style.
Eduardo holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics with specialty in Finance from Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de Mexico (ITAM).
Carlos joined the VACE Partners team in 2022.
Carlos holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics with specialty in Finance from Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de Mexico (ITAM).
Juan Esteban joined the VACE Partners team in 2023.
Before joining VACE, Juan Esteban worked as an analyst in the Strategic Planning and Transformation department in Scotiabank México, one of the country’s most relevant financial institutions.
Juan Esteban graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Industrial Engineering from Tec de Monterrey, Campus Santa Fe. He also completed an International Master’s Degree in Finance from EADA Business School in Barcelona.
Alonso joined VACE Partners in 2023.
Alonso holds a bachelor’s degree in Economics, Psichology and Journalism from Northwestern University in Illinois.
Andrés joined VACE Partners as an analyst in 2021.
Before joining VACE, he worked as an analyst in the Coverage area of BNP Paribas, a French bank that has been operating in Mexico for over 50 years. While at BNP, Andrés participated in different projects focused on financing and advising large Mexican corporations and financial institutions.
Andrés is currently studying to get his bachelor’s degree in Financial Management at the Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de Mexico (ITAM).
Jesús González joined VACE Partners as an analyst in 2019 and was later promoted to associate in 2021.
Before joining VACE Partners, Jesus worked as a Business Development Analyst at Enel Green Power, where he acquired extensive knowledge in the development of renewable energy projects and in the electric power industry in Mexico.
Jesús studied Mechanical and Electrical Engineering at the Universidad Iberoamericana in Mexico City where he graduated with honors as the best in his class and received the Academic Excellence award (top 1%) in the National Graduation Exam (EGEL) by the National Center of Evaluation for Higher Education (CENEVAL). Additionally, he holds a diploma in Business Administration from Berkeley-Haas School of Business.
APx Acquisition Corp. I is a company formed for the purpose of effecting a merger, amalgamation, share exchange, asset acquisition, share purchase, reorganization or similar business combination with one or more businesses. The Company intends to seek a business combination with a technology-enabled Latin American company.
APx Acquisition Corp. I closed a $172.5 Million Initial Public Offering, Including Full Exercise by Underwriter to Purchase Additional Shares on December 9th 2021. The Class A ordinary shares and warrants are listed on the Nasdaq under the symbols “APXI” and “APXIW,” respectively.
APx’s key individuals include Daniel Braatz (Chief Executive Officer and Chairman) and Xavier Martinez (Chief Financial Officer).