LONDON and GLASGOW, January 9, 2012 /PRNewswire/ --
- New secondaries fund acquires cleantech portfolio from SSE plc
Scottish Equity Partners (SEP) has raised a new £95 million fund to invest in innovative green energy businesses in a deal involving the acquisition of a portfolio of clean energy assets from SSE Ventures, the investment arm of FTSE 100 utilities company SSE plc.
SEP raised the new secondaries fund from four institutional investors, headed by Lexington Partners, the world's largest independent manager of secondary private equity and co-investment funds with $20 billion under management. The syndicate also comprises UK based investors, Hermes GPE and F&C Private Equity, as well as Swiss-based Partners Group.
The new Environmental Energies Fund (EEF) has acquired nine companies from the SSE Ventures portfolio and will operate as a partnership between SSE and the financial institutions, with SSE maintaining a significant interest in the portfolio through becoming an investor alongside the financial institutions. SEP has formed a separate team to manage the fund headed by SEP partner Gary Le Sueur.
The fund's portfolio companies are market leaders from across the European clean energy spectrum, including solar energy, ground source heat pumps, energy efficiency services, electricity grid management solutions, domestic water recycling and heat recovery, wave energy, small scale hydro-electric projects and low-carbon based community heating systems (see Notes to Editor for full details of the nine companies).
EEF will have substantial fresh capital available for investment in the portfolio and also has agreement to add up to a further five SSE investments to the portfolio in future.
This marks the first move into the secondary fund market for SEP, the UK's leading growth equity and venture capital firm. It is SEP's second significant recent fundraising, following the successful close of its new £200m SEP IV fund announced last week, bringing the total raised in recent months to £300 million.
SEP Managing Partner, Calum Paterson said: "We are excited by the opportunity that this partnership with SSE brings and pleased to have secured such blue chip investor backing for the fund. Energy-related technology investments have always been an area of strong interest for us and there will be synergies between our involvement with the new secondary fund and SEP's standalone primary investment activity."
SSE's Finance Director, Gregor Alexander, said: "SEP has a strong track record in helping innovative companies grow and mature. By moving our cleantech investments into the Environmental Energies Fund we can ensure the companies are able to benefit from the track record and expertise of SEP, draw upon the financial resources of the new partners and ultimately deliver a better return on our initial investment".
"We continue to believe that cleantech companies have an important role to play in developing new technologies and that is why we continue to be involved as a major partner in the EEF."
Marshall Parke, Managing Partner in Lexington Partners' London office, said: "The clean energy sector is relatively new to the secondary market, and we expect to see more secondary activity in this space in the future." Pål Ristvedt, Partner, added: "Selecting the right partners is absolutely critical to the success of these deals. We believe the three way partnership between a major strategic player like SSE, the substantial energy and general investment expertise of SEP plus the secondary experience of Lexington Partners creates a very strong platform for managing these assets."
Notes to Editors
About the Environmental Energies Fund:
The Environmental Energies Fund is a £95 million secondaries fund formed by SEP to acquire and invest in a portfolio of innovative UK based green energy businesses originally backed by SSE plc. The fund is managed by leading UK growth equity and venture capital firm SEP and will operate as a partnership between FTSE-100 listed SSE plc, one of the UK's largest energy companies, and the fund's blue-chip financial backers Lexington Partners, Hermes GPE, F&C Private Equity and Partners Group.
The fund's portfolio of assets was acquired from SSE Ventures, the investment arm of SSE plc and comprise the following nine companies:
(Energy efficiency services and solutions)
Aquamarine Power: http://www.aquamarinepower.com
(Marine renewable power technology)
Cyberhawk Innovations: http://www.cyberhawkinnovations.co.uk
(Unmanned aerial inspection of energy installations)
Geothermal International: http://www.geothermalint.co.uk
(Turnkey services in ground and air source heat pumps)
Green Highland Renewables: http://www.greenhighland.co.uk
(Small and medium scale hydro-power schemes)
Smarter Grid Solutions: http://www.smartergridsolutions.com
(Electricity grid management technologies)
(Solar power design and installation)
Vital Energi: http://www.vitalenergi.co.uk
(Energy centre installation and services)
(Water recycling and heat recovery)
About Scottish Equity Partners
Scottish Equity Partners (SEP) is a leading independent, owner-managed growth equity and venture capital firm with a 20 year track record of successful investing. Operating from offices in Glasgow and London, it invests in innovative, high growth potential companies in the IT, healthcare and energy sectors. With significant funds available and an integrated investment team, SEP has the resource and experience to add value from investment through to exit and has been selected as the partner of choice by many of the UK's leading technology companies.
Recent portfolio exits include the sale of web traffic management company Zeus Technology to Riverbed Technology Inc (NASDAQ: RVBD) for a total price of up to $140m, recently named Best Venture Investment of the Year. SEP also sold multimedia home networking company Gigle Networks to Broadcom Corp (NASDAQ: BRCM). SEP also exited from cancer therapy company BioVex which was acquired by Amgen Inc. (NASDAQ: AMGN, SEHK: 4332) in a deal worth $1bn which earned SEP won the Venture Deal of the Year award in the Unquote British Private Equity Awards 2011.
SEP's current portfolio comprises award-winning high growth companies including oil technology business Deep Casing Tools (http://www.deepcasingtools.com); energy-related technology specialist ARKeX (http://www.arkex.com); Media Ingenuity (http://www.mediaingenuity.com) a specialist in online marketing services and technology for the financial services sector; managed IT services provider Control Circle (http://www.controlcircle.com); flight search engine Skyscanner (http://www.skyscanner.net); wireless communications leader ipaccess (http://www.ipaccess.com); IT analytics company Sumerian (http://www.sumerian.com/); Cmed (http://www.cmedgroup.com) which combines full clinical research services with advanced clinical data capture and management technology; and healthcare informatics company Aridhia (http://www.aridhia.com).
For more information visit http://www.sep.co.uk
SOURCE Scottish Equity Partners