Companies in Europe looking for money from private equity firms to launch an initial public offering may want to think twice. Financial News reports that over the past four years p.e.-backed IPOs have performed about half as well as flotations funded by other means. The analysis indicates that from 2003 to June 1, the average p.e-backed IPO rose 73%, compared with 137% for all others. Focusing on 2005 alone, non-p.e.-backed IPOs were up 29.7%, vs. 18.4% for those with p.e. funds. The one exception, says FN, was 2004, when a few great p.e-backed deals 3is funding of the CSR offering, which has skyrocketed 539% since, to name one helped p.e-back IPOs outperform the rest. The study seems to debunk the theory that private equity funds that run things more efficiently with greater discipline will lead to a better company. One investment bank analyst told FN, Private equity firms are successful by being good buyers and good sellers. Public buyers should always employ the maxim caveat emptor when they look to invest in a private-equity backed listing. In one instance, shares of U.K. retailer Debenhams have been trading down, suggests the analysts, because the p.e firms that backed it Texas Pacific Group, CVC Capital Partners and Merrill Lynch Private Equity failed to leave something for the next guy. FN found the best p.e-backed companies were those funded by Goldman Sachs Capital Partners, followed by HM Capital (formerly Hicks Muse Tat & Furst), 3i, Barclays Private Equity and Kohlberg Kravis Roberts. Texas Pacific Group, according to FN, had the three of the worst performing IPOs.