Foresight launches £100 million East of England Fund
- Foresight East of England Fund (the “Fund”) will be Foresight’s fifth regional private equity fund, investing in the East of England and beyond
- The Fund is cornerstoned by the Cambridgeshire Pension Fund
- Targeting investments of up to £5 million in growing companies
- Foresight to open Cambridge office
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London, 02 September 2019: Foresight Group LLP (“Foresight”), a leading independent infrastructure and small cap private equity investment manager, is pleased to announce the launch of its fifth regional private equity fund, which will focus on companies in the thriving SME sector in the East of England.
Cornerstoned by the Cambridgeshire Pension Fund, the Fund will target long term value growth for investors and provide a permanent pool of capital to fund businesses in the region and beyond. The Fund breaks new ground as an evergreen pool of patient capital targeted at the small company private equity sector in the UK.
The Fund will typically invest up to £5 million into established companies with a view to assisting management with their growth ambitions. It will invest across a broad range of sectors, across the full range of transaction types including buy-outs and equity release, always with the objective of supporting management with their growth ambitions for the business.
The East of England is home to more than 20,000 small established companies. Whilst it receives significant venture capital funding for early stage businesses, the region is not well served by private equity to support established, smaller companies. The Fund will address this funding gap, bringing not only capital but Foresight’s insight and expertise to the companies in which it invests.
Foresight has been investing in small businesses across the UK for more than 35 years, delivering strong financial returns and guided by a well-established set of responsible investment principles. It is amongst the most active investors in the UK, having made more than 30 investments over the last 12 months and with a portfolio of more than 90 companies. Its growing private equity team of 24 investment professionals now manages over £700 million from offices throughout the UK.
Foresight will shortly open an office in Cambridge, at the heart of the business community.
Russell Healey, Partner and Head of Private Equity at Foresight commented:
“The East of England has a large number of companies in an exciting range of sectors including life sciences, technology, media and engineering, but it has traditionally attracted relatively low levels of private equity investment. We are delighted to be working with the Cambridgeshire Pension Fund to provide a permanent, patient pool of capital, which targets strong returns, and around which the regional business community can make long-term plans. We look forward to backing entrepreneurs in the region and working with them to grow their businesses.”
Paul Tysoe, Investment Manager, Cambridgeshire Pension Fund, added:
“Foresight has an excellent track record of making private equity investments into small UK companies, and we are pleased to be working with them on the Foresight East of England Fund. The Fund will target an established gap in the funding market, where we believe there is not only the opportunity to deliver attractive returns, but also to support growing companies in the East of England and beyond.”
Sweta Chattopadhyay, Director Private Markets, bfinance said:
“bfinance is delighted to have assisted with the implementation of the Foresight East of England Fund. The strong commercial and social impetus behind this fund highlights the purpose-driven approach that Cambridgeshire and Foresight have taken to have a deep positive impact on the local business community in the area through the investments this fund will make. Additionally, we are excited to have been involved at the inception of this innovative evergreen private equity vehicle, focused on the lower-mid market segment.”
For further information contact:
Matt Smith / Russell Healey, Foresight Group, 0203 763 6942
Caroline Merrell / Toby Moore, Citigate Dewe Rogerson, 0207 638 9571
NOTES FOR EDITORS
About Cambridge Pension Fund
The Cambridgeshire Pension Fund manages approximately £3 billion of Fund assets on behalf of more than 80,000 local government pension scheme members, administered by Cambridgeshire County Council. The Fund is managed through a joint partnership with Northamptonshire County Council namely LGSS, which provides back office shared services including pensions’ administration, providing efficient converged processes, sharing of resources and economies of scale to both funds.
About Foresight Group LLP ("Foresight”):
Foresight is a leading independent infrastructure and private equity investment manager which has been managing investment funds on behalf of institutions and retail clients for more than 35 years.
Foresight has c. £4 billion of Assets Under Management across a number of funds, including Listed Vehicles, Limited Partnerships, Enterprise Investment Schemes (EISs), Venture Capital Trusts (VCTs) and Inheritance Tax Solutions using Business Property Relief (BPR).
Foresight’s Private Equity team, comprising 24 investment professionals, provides equity investments of up to £5 million through its growing regional office network.
Foresight was recently named Fund Manager of the Year at the PLC Awards. Foresight was awarded ‘Generalist VCT of the Year’ at the Investment Week Tax Efficiency Awards 2018/19 and was a finalist in the 2018 Unquote British Private Equity Awards as Venture and Growth Capital House of the Year. In 2017, Foresight was voted ‘Best VCT Investment Manager’ at the Growth Investor Awards, having been previously awarded ‘VCT House of the Year’ at the 2016 Unquote British Private Equity awards.
Foresight’s five regional funds:
- £100 million Foresight East of England Fund, on behalf of the Cambridgeshire Pension Fund launched in 2019;
- £20 million Foresight Scottish Growth Fund on behalf of the Scottish Government’s Scottish Growth Scheme launched in 2019. The Scottish Growth Fund is supported by the European Regional Development Fund;
- £38 million Midlands Engine Investment Fund (MEIF) equity fund for the East and South East Midlands launched in 2018. It is a collaboration between the British Business Bank and ten Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs), funded by the European Regional Development Fund;
- £58 million Foresight Regional Investment fund, backed by the Greater Manchester Pension Fund, the South Yorkshire Pensions Authority and Clwyd Pension Fund launched in 2015; and
- £39 million Foresight Nottingham Fund (fully deployed) on behalf of Nottingham City Council and Nottinghamshire County Council pension funds and the British Business Bank launched in 2013.
Foresight is headquartered in London with regional UK offices in Manchester, Nottingham, Milton Keynes, Leicester, Edinburgh and Guernsey and international offices in Sydney, Rome, Madrid and Seoul.