Beechbrook announces new €35m fund for Irish SMEs
ISIF commits €16m to new endeavour, which has a target fund size of up to €100m
The new fund will target fast-growing SMEs that have a turnover of between €3m and €25m.
Beechbrook Capital has launched a new €35 million investment fund for small- and medium-sized Irish companies to provide them with loans of between €2 million to €6 million.
The new fund is supported by the State-backed Ireland Strategic Investment Fund (ISIF) and the Finnish private credit manager Certior, who have both committed €16 million each.
Beechbrook said that with additional investments to the fund already pledged, including a further €4 million each from ISIF and Certior, it expects to hold further closes through the year, with the aim of ultimately having a €100 million fund in place.
The new fund will target fast-growing SMEs that have a turnover of between €3 million and €25 million and earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (Ebitda) of more than €1 million.
The fund, which is to be managed from Beechbrook’s new Irish headquarters in Cork, is to have a particular focus on the regions and regional growth hubs throughout the Republic.
Established in 2008, Beechbrook is a leading provider of debt and equity capital to SMEs, with 64 investments made to date.
Beechbrook typically invests in lower mid-market private equity-backed businesses in northern Europe and non-private equity-backed businesses in the UK. The existing private debt funds have raised more than €750 million to date, with companies supported by the UK non-banking specialist including Hosted Desktop UK, Gravity Global, Leathwaite, Wilton & Bain and Nu-Heat.
The organisation earlier this year announced the first close of its second UK SME Credit Fund with commitments of £128 million. It also recently established a presence in Germany.
“The Beechbrook Ireland SME fund is a natural evolution for Beechbrook. We are pioneering this type of funding to Irish SMEs. We have received numerous requests for it from family and manager-owned businesses around the country, which are acutely aware of the shortage of long-term development and expansion finance currently available,” said managing partner Nick Fenn.
The new fund is to be managed locally by David Merriman and John O’Sullivan. Mr Merriman previously worked for Bank of Ireland for more than 30 years in a number of roles, including head of enterprise development.
Mr O’Sullivan has 17 years of relevant experience, including 10 years working at Enterprise Ireland, where he was a senior vice-president, co-managing the direct investment fund, with responsibility for a large portfolio of debt and equity investments in Irish, UK and US SMEs.