Record year for BGF in South West following move to new office

December 5, 2018

Investment group BGF is celebrating its best ever year for deals across the South West and South Wales handled by its regional office.

The group, the UK’s most active investor in growing businesses, has invested more than £50m across seven new businesses and two existing portfolio companies over the past 12 months.

Its regional team also earlier this year moved into new state-of-the-art premises in Bristol, reflecting its commitment to the region and its growth potential. The office also serves as a working hub for its portfolio companies and their advisors.

The office’s most recent investments include £11.5m into Seasalt, the Cornish lifestyle and clothing brand, and £3.2m into Exeter-based Lightfoot – an in-car technology business led by former Dyson CEO Martin McCourt that enables drivers to earn prizes, discounts and rewards in recognition of their smooth driving style.

Closer to home, the office has also this year invested £4.7m in Weston-super-Mare-headquartered heavy equipment rental firm Plantforce and £6.3m in Bristol-based Molson Construction Equipment, the UK’s largest distributor of capital equipment to the construction sector.

Ned Dorbin, who leads BGF’s investment team in the region, said: “2018 has been an incredibly active year with our team transacting a record number of deals, bringing the total local investment to £150m. The investments we have made demonstrate the full breadth of our capability, working with small and large companies and a variety of different growth strategies.

“We are very much looking forward to welcoming the management teams and non-executives we work with, as well as our wider network, to our new offices. We encourage them to use the space as a modern and convenient location to conduct their own meetings and events.

“BGF has firmly established its presence in Bristol, and our network continues to grow in the South West. The new office and the continued growth of our portfolio reflects our commitment to the region, and the strength of opportunity here.”

BGF was established in 2011 to provide investment into growing small and mid-sized businesses and has become an active part of the region’s business community.

It backs established private companies from its network of 14 offices as well as earlier-stage and listed businesses and provides long-term capital for a minority, non-controlling stake in the companies it backs.

Across the UK, BGF has backed more than 250 businesses pursing growth strategies across a range of sectors including technology, food and drink, health, consumer goods, manufacturing and more.

It makes long-term equity capital investments in return for a minority stake in the companies it backs. Initial investments are typically between £1m-£10m followed by significant follow-on funding as required. BGF is a minority, non-controlling equity partner with a patient outlook, based on shared long-term goals with the management teams it backs.

Pictured: The BGF team in their new office with Ned Dorbin, far right


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