About private equity

How private equity invests in privately-owned businesses, supports jobs and creates prosperity.

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Research

Private Equity at Work report

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Employment & job creation across Europe

Private equity is a cornerstone of the European economy present in every region and every major business sector across the continent. From technology and life sciences start-ups to manufacturing small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and large consumer-focused multinationals, private equity and venture capital backed companies support millions of high-value jobs driving prosperity and growth in the process.

Private equity is an engine for growth, and growth is an engine for creating jobs across Europe. This was our message last year when we published our first ever Private Equity at Work report presenting a transparent account of the European private equity industry’s record on employment. It is as true and relevant today as it was then. In total, private equity supports 10.2 million jobs in Europe, making it a major employer in most industry sectors. From another angle, the figure equates to 4.3% of the entire European workforce in 2019, employed at 23,009 portfolio companies, ranging from emerging start-ups and fast-growing SMEs to large multinational corporations. 

This second edition of our Private Equity at Work report greatly expands data collection on employment in portfolio companies backed by private equity firms in Europe. Where last year we collected data only from Invest Europe members, the report now has - as its backbone - data from all portfolio companies in Europe backed by any private equity firm.

Private Equity at Work research report (published May 2021) Image Members Icon

Private Equity at Work research report (published May 2021)

27 May 2021
Invest Europe Research

Detailed evidence and analysis of the European private equity industry’s real contribution to employment, in 2019, and job creation, in 2018-19, and the far-reaching impact this has on the people, societies and economies of Europe.

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Private Equity at Work research report video (01.04)

Private Equity at Work research report video

Private equity is an essential part of the solid foundation on which the European economy is built and its society flourishes.

Watch our dedicated video to find out more!

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Employment 2019 - The facts

10.2m

European employees worked in private equity backed companies

4.3%

of Europe's total 236 million workforce

23,009

companies in Europe backed by private equity in 2019 across all industry sectors and all regions

Employment by type of private equity firm

Chart Employment By Type Private Equity Firm 210524

Employment data is based on an extrapolation of a sample of 12,412 portfolio companies.

Chart Employment By Type Private Equity Firm 210524

Private Equity at Work research report video - Employment 2019 ​(00.15)

Private Equity at Work research report video - Employment 2019

Job creation 2018-19 - The facts

254,157

net jobs were created by private equity backed companies in 2019

+5.5%

Job creation of 5.5% in private equity backed companies in 2019

+10%

more new jobs created by SMEs in 2019

Private equity job creation outperforms the market

Chart Pe At Work 210524

Job creation data is based on portfolio companies in Europe active and backed by private equity in 2018 & 2019.

Chart Pe At Work 210524

Private Equity at Work research report video - Job creation 2018-19 ​(00.15)

Private Equity at Work research report video - Job creation 2018-19

Eric de Montgolfier Image
Eric de Montgolfier

CEO

Invest Europe

Employment in private equity backed companies increased by 5.5% in 2019. This was more than 6 times greater than wider market growth of 0.9%. Quotation Marks Graphic
Private Equity at Work research report (published May 2021) Image Members Icon

Private Equity at Work research report (published May 2021)

27 May 2021
Invest Europe Research

Detailed evidence and analysis of the European private equity industry’s real contribution to employment, in 2019, and job creation, in 2018-19, and the far-reaching impact this has on the people, societies and economies of Europe.

PREVIOUS EDITIONS
Private Equity at Work research report (published September 2020) Image Members Icon

Private Equity at Work research report (published September 2020)

17 Sep 2020
Invest Europe Research

Invest Europe provides, for the first time, detailed evidence and analysis of the European private equity industry’s contribution to employment, in 2018, and job creation, in 2017-18, in Europe.

Full report PDF 5.54 MB
Fact sheet PDF 190.46 KB
Underlying Data (Member only) XLSX 1.78 MB (Member only)
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Meet the team

Research

Julien Krantz Image

Julien Krantz

Research

Research Director

Sofian Giuroiu Image

Sofian Giuroiu

Research

Research Officer

Daniel Irwin-Brown Image

Daniel Irwin-Brown

Research

Research Manager

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