DFJ Esprit to manage 3i VC companies

Private equity group 3i has sold off several of its European-based investee companies, which will now be managed by venture capital (VC) firm DFJ Esprit.

‘Disruptive’ technology businesses such as Icera Semiconductors, Light Blue Optics, The Cloud and CamSemi will now be managed by a new division of DFJ Esprit named Encore Ventures.

Encore Ventures’ first fund, Encore I, will have a maximum size of $280 million (£170 million). Global secondaries firms Coller Capital and HarbourVest Partners are the sole investors, and thus effectively the acquirers of the 3i portfolio companies.

Peter Wilson, managing director at HarbourVest Partners, says the transaction provided ‘a rare opportunity to acquire high quality European-based venture assets’.

DFJ Esprit CEO Simon Cook says, ‘We are excited to be the first mainstream venture firm to establish a dedicated portfolio secondary team working alongside our primary fund team.’

Encore Ventures is headed by Charles Cameron and Brian Robertson, whose backgrounds include operational management, M&A and capital-raising for European technology companies. Members of 3i’s venture portfolio team will also join Encore as partners.

3i, which was advised by private equity advisory firm Campbell Lutyens and law firm SJ Berwin, last year decided to move out of early-stage investments in favour of larger deals.

Nick Britton

Nick Britton

Nick was the Managing Editor for growthbusiness.co.uk when it was owned by Vitesse Media, before moving on to become Head of Investment Group and Editor at What Investment and thence to Head of Intermediary...

Related Topics