Carousel Capital was founded in 1996 by Erskine Bowles and Nelson Schwab. Erskine Bowles had previously founded and led the pioneering middle market mergers and acquisitions firm Bowles Hollowell Conner & Co. Mr. Bowles departed Carousel in 1998 to serve as Chief of Staff in U. S. President Bill Clinton’s administration among other distinguished roles in public service. Nelson Schwab had previously been a corporate executive who led a successful buyout as CEO of Kings Entertainment Company. These longtime friends brought together their business and acquisitions experience to focus on what they believed was a vastly underserved market: The Southeastern United States.
Bowles and Schwab formed Carousel Capital to be the leading provider of private equity capital to middle market business owners throughout the region. To accomplish this task, they assembled a group of current and former Chief Executive Officers of established companies throughout the Southeast not only to provide the bulk of the firm’s initial investment capital, but also to help provide them with access to the business communities in the region. They named their new firm Carousel Capital in honor of an antique carousel horse presented to Mr. Schwab by his former employees at Kings Entertainment Company representing their collective commitment to excellence during the course of the buyout. Bowles and Schwab embraced this same commitment in their pursuit of each opportunity with their new firm. Today, Carousel Capital continues their legacy of commitment to this strategy.