State-backed BGF invests €3.6m in Dublin security business

Venture capital firm will take a significant minority stake in Action24

State-backed venture capital firm BGF has invested €3.6 million to acquire a “significant minority stake” in Dublin-based security business Action24.

Action24, founded in 1981, provides monitored intruder alarms, CCTV and access control solutions across both domestic and commercial markets. It has about 13,000 customers and employs 75 staff from its facility in Sandyford, Co Dublin.

Corporate financier Conor Sheehan, of CKS Finance, will join the group has chairman and will also invest in the business. Mr Sheehan has worked with technology company Lernosity as chairman and Accelerated Payments as a non-executive director. BGF's Mark Sykes will also join the board.

"This is another excellent Irish business which is looking well beyond Covid-19 and we are happy to support their ambitious growth plans," said Leo Casey, head of BGF in the Republic.


“We are patient, long-term investors so the key for us is having confidence that the existing shareholders and management of the businesses we are investing in have the plans and the skill set to achieve their ambitions; this is certainly the case with Action24.”

Fifth investment

The investment is the fifth made by BGF (formerly the Business Growth Fund) in the Republic. For its first investment, it took a stake in Donegal-headquartered nursing home operator Brindley Healthcare in return for a €10 million investment in January of last year.

Last year it also invested €5 million in return for a minority stake in residential housebuilder Winterbrook.

In December, it invested €5 million to take a "significant minority stake" in aerospace and industrial engineering company Team Accessories Limited.

And earlier this month it invested €10.5 million in cybersecurity business Edgescan.

The Government-backed Ireland Strategic Investment Fund, AIB, Bank of Ireland and Ulster Bank are all investors in BGF, which targets equity investments of between €1 million and €10 million. BGF only takes minority positions.

The company launched a dedicated fund in the Republic in late 2017 with up to €250 million to invest in small- and medium-sized enterprises.

Peter Hamilton

Peter Hamilton

Peter Hamilton is a contributor to The Irish Times specialising in business