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ISIF-backed equity fund makes two investments in food sector

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BGF has taken stakes in two food and nutrition companies as part of its plan to invest at least £25m (€29m) in fast-growing Irish businesses this year.

The UK private equity fund, backed by Ireland Strategic Investment Fund (ISIF), is investing €12.5m in Galway-based dietary supplement Revive Active and making a “significant” investment in Dublin Meat Company, makers of Fit Foods ready meals.

The deals, in which BGF takes a minority stake, mark the fund’s first steps into the food and nutrition sector in Ireland.

BGF has now backed 13 Irish companies in a series of transactions valued at €80m over five years. Chief Executive Stephen Welton said the company has a €250m fund to use in Ireland and is building relationships with hundreds of companies.

BGF has deployed £3bn in the UK and has a short-term target of investing €100m in Ireland.

Established in 2011, Revive Active manufactures a range of dietary supplements at its Mullingar facility. The company boasts a number of well-known brand ambassadors, including wellness influencer Roz Purcell and Irish rugby player James Ryan.

Founder Dáithi O’Connor remains majority shareholder after BGF’s investment. Leo Casey, head of BGF in Ireland, will join the company’s board.

“What Dáithí has ​​achieved with Revive Active over the past 11 years is incredible. This will be our first investment in a Galway based company,” said Mr Casey.

The Dublin Meat Company operates six artisan butchers and an online ordering service.

BGF’s investment in the company will fund the acquisition of Monaghan’s Swift Fine Foods food processor. Swift, which employs over 200 people, makes Fit Foods meals, of which 120,000 are distributed weekly.

“Our Fit Foods range is growing rapidly. Having our own manufacturing facilities means we are now able to guarantee the quality and delivery of all aspects of our Fit Foods range,” said Brian O’Leary, Chief Executive of Dublin Meat.

BGF’s Joe Higgins will join the board of the expanded business.

BGF began operations in Ireland in 2017 and was awarded an investment mandate by the government-backed ISIF to become an equity investor in growing Irish companies. The model envisages taking minority stakes, typically between €1m and €10m, in growing companies and staying there for up to 10 years.

https://www.independent.ie/business/irish/isif-backed-equity-fund-makes-two-food-sector-investments-41717931.html ISIF-backed equity fund makes two investments in food sector

Fry Electronics Team

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