Jon Moulton's Better Capital launches joint venture turnaround fund with NPRF

The National Pensions Reserve Fund of Ireland and turnaround private equity fund Better Capital are joining forces to back failing businesses in Ireland.

A new small and medium-sized company (SMEs) turnaround fund worth €100 million (£81 million) will be jointly managed by the National Pensions Reserve Fund of Ireland (NPRF) and Better Capital.

The SME Turnaround Fund will target distressed firms in Ireland, with deal flow sourced through Better Capital’s new Dublin office.

Veteran investor, and GrowthBusiness columnist, Jon Moulton set up Better Capital back at the end of 2009, with its fist deal closed at the start of 2010.

The terms of the joint venture will see the BECAP12 Fund, Better Capital’s second fund which was raised in 2012, enter into a partnership with the NPRF. Furthermore, the venture will be operated through Better Capital LP, a new Guernsey limited partnership managed by BECAP12.

Funding for investments, the two bodies say, will be done on a deal-by-deal basis.

Richard Crowder, chairman of Better Capital, comments, ‘The joint venture with the National Pensions Reserve Fund of Ireland is an important development in the implementation of the 2012 Fund’s investment strategy, which has a primary focus on investments in businesses with significant activities within the United Kingdom or Ireland.

‘It enables Better Capital to partner with a significant sovereign entity to enhance the 2012 Fund’s access to a market that offers considerable potential for turnaround investment opportunities.’

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The partnership follows on from Better Capital’s recent involvement in the government’s Green Investment Bank. Back in April 2012, Moulton’s Better Capital and Foresight were named as joint managers of a new £80 million investment fund aimed at promoting green infrastructure.

It was then seven months before the first deal was closed – with an £8 million allocation injected into a project in the North East of England which will generate energy from waste.

Commenting on the future joint venture with Better Capital, NPRF Commission chairman Paul Carty says, ‘Our joint venture with turnaround investor specialist Better Capital means that the NPRF will be able to deploy capital to distressed Irish companies.

‘This is a significant step in the refocusing of the NPRF towards investment in areas of strategic importance to the Irish economy while allowing us to target attractive total returns.’

Hunter Ruthven

Hunter Ruthven

Hunter was the Editor for from 2012 to 2014, before moving on to Caspian Media Ltd to be Editor of Real Business.