Livingbridge raises over GBP330m to invest in fast-growth UK SMEs

UK mid-market private equity investor Livingbridge has closed the Livingbridge Enterprise 3 fund with total capital commitments of GBP334 million, an increase of 50 per cent on its predecessor fund, Livingbridge Enterprise 2, a 2015 vintage fund.

Enterprise 3, which will leverage Livingbridge’s experience, international network and growth acceleration capabilities, will invest in fast growth SMEs primarily in the UK, with an enterprise value of up to GBP50 million across the firm’s sectors: TMT; services; consumer markets; and healthcare and education.

The fund has attracted a globally diversified range of high-quality investors including corporate and public pension funds, endowments, fund of funds and family offices. More than 70 per cent of investors in Enterprise 3 are returning limited partners who have invested across the Livingbridge platform, with new commitments from several additional blue-chip investors.

Commencing in 2015, Enterprise 2 is now over 80 per cent invested and Livingbridge expects to begin deploying Enterprise 3 imminently. Enterprise 2 has invested in 14 SMEs to date including most recently Nationwide, an aggregator of equipment rental and hire services; disguise, a leading global provider of live event visualisation solutions whose technology supports many of the world’s largest touring artists such as U2, Rolling Stones and Ed Sheeran; Bright Futures, a provider of specialist education and care to young adults; and Simply Conveyancing, a leading provider of tech-enabled conveyancing services to the UK residential property market.

The successful close of Enterprise 3 marks the beginning of a dynamic period of activity for Livingbridge across its platform. Livingbridge 6, a GBP660 million fund which commenced in November 2016, is currently just under 60 per cent invested in 12 companies and has a strong pipeline of potential investments in due diligence. 

Over the last 20 years, Livingbridge has consistently generated strong returns for its investors, delivering a gross multiple of 2.6x and a gross IRR of 28 per cent over 90 exits across all of its funds. 

Wol Kolade, Managing Partner at Livingbridge, says: “We’re delighted that Enterprise 3 has closed with a significant increase in capital. In the current market it outlines the strength of our 20-year track record and the strong relationships we have built with our investors. We look forward to continuing to back high-calibre, fast-growth SMEs which fuel the growth of the UK economy.”

Fiona Dane, Partner - Fundraising and Investor Relations, at Livingbridge, adds: “We are very grateful to our loyal investors who have partnered with Livingbridge over many years and are very pleased to welcome several new highly respected and experienced limited partners to the Livingbridge platform. As a firm we have grown considerably since the close of Enterprise 2. Our team of more than 50 investment professionals operating across three continents are well placed to take advantage of the investment opportunities in this market and to support SMEs to deliver their potential across the lifecycle of the fund and beyond.”