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Mitt Romney to take new role at Solamere Capital

WASHINGTON -- Mitt Romney is planning to take on a new role at Solamere Capital, the investment firm started by his son Tagg.

The former Republican presidential nominee will be the chairman of the executive committee and will also be on the investment committee at the firm, according to sources familiar with the move and a letter that went out to current investors on Wednesday night announcing Romney’s new involvement.

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“Governor Romney’s track record in the private equity field is extraordinary, and we are honored to have him more involved in the firm,” read the letter, which was obtained by the Globe.

The letter noted they would begin accepting new investment commitments in the first half of 2013.

“We believe that Governor Romney’s experience and insight in private investing will enhance Solamere’s distinctiveness in this regard, and will be a large benefit to you, our investors,” read the letter, which also mentioned a Solamere Investor Conference that would be held in June.

Romney had established an office at Solamere’s location on Newbury Street in Boston just after losing the presidential election. But the office was to handle his personal affairs, and he had no plans to work at the firm, his advisers said at the time.

Tagg Romney launched the firm two weeks after his father dropped out of the presidential race in February 2008, with an initial goal of $200 million in investments. He founded it with Spencer Zwick, who led Romney’s fundraising teams during his 2008 and 2012 campaigns.

Solamere Capital was named after a private community in Deer Valley, Utah, where Romney owned a ski mansion.

NBC News, which first reported Romney’s move to Solamere, reported that Romney would work at Solamere one week per month, advising on private equity matters but not raising money for the firm.

Romney in December also rejoined the board at Marriott and more recently started taking on more of a public profile. He had retreated from public view in the aftermath of the election but on last week sat for an interview with Fox News and next week plans to speak at a large gathering of conservatives.

Here is a complete copy of the e-mail that went out to investors on Wednesday, announcing Romney would be joining Solamere:

We are pleased to announce that Governor Mitt Romney has agreed to play a greater role at Solamere. As many of you know, he has been a limited partner since we founded Solamere, but going forward he will spend a portion of his time serving as Chairman of our Executive Committee and as a participant on the Investment Committee. Governor Romney’s track record in the private equity field is extraordinary, and we are honored to have him more involved in the firm.

As you recall, we formed Solamere to bring together an exclusive network of successful business leaders with the objectives of 1) gaining access to high-quality private investments and 2) drawing on the strength of the network to create value in those investments. We remain very pleased with the performance to date. Accordingly, many of you have asked about when you will be able to invest in another Solamere fund. We expect to begin accepting new investment commitments in the first half of 2013.

We recognize there is significant interest and we will of course give you, our current partners, the first opportunity to invest. However, we feel strongly that there is value in not raising too large of a fund, and therefore anticipate keeping the size to a level we feel we can appropriately manage within our desired band of target returns. We believe that Governor Romney’s experience and insight in private investing will enhance Solamere’s distinctiveness in this regard, and will be a large benefit to you, our investors.

Finally, we look forward to seeing you in June at the Solamere Investor Conference. At the Conference, we will of course provide an update on the current investments and review upcoming opportunities. We also plan to expand the scope of the conference this year to include additional “experts and enthusiasts” on a variety of topical subjects. We have always believed there is real value in the Solamere network and in finding ways to bring this network together. This has been and will continue to be an important part of what we do at Solamere.

Best regards,

Tagg Romney, Eric Scheuermann, Spencer Zwick

Matt Viser can be reached at maviser@globe.com.
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