A Cork-based lender has launched an initial €35m fund aimed at growth-orientated SMEs.
The Irish arm of international lender Beechbrook Capital will manage the fund, which is also backed by the Ireland Strategic Investment Fund (ISIF) and Finland-based private credit manager Certior; both of which have committed €16m.
Additional investments to the fund have been pledged, including conditional approval for a further €4m from each of ISIF and Certior. Beechbrook expects to hold further closes through 2019 with a target fund size of up to €100m.
The fund is targeting fast-growing SMEs that have a turnover of between €3m and €25m and earnings of more than €1m. There will be a particular focus on regionally-based SMEs.
The new fund will provide mainly senior secured loans to Irish SMEs that are seeking funding to support growth plans, acquisitions, buy-outs, shareholder re-alignments and domestic and overseas expansion plans.
"We are pioneering this type of funding to Irish SMEs," said Beechbrook managing partner Nick Fenn.
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.
"This regional base and focus are entirely consistent with one of ISIF’s priority themes of investing commercially to support regional development," said ISIF senior investment director Donal Murphy.