Kennet Partners is to invest more than £100m in UK software companies as part of a new £200m fund.
The European technology growth equity investor raised its fifth fund in partnership with Edmond de Rothschild and told BusinessCloud “at least half” would be deployed in the UK.
Kennet has actively invested in the UK market since its establishment in 1997. Its current portfolio companies here include Receipt Bank (bookkeeping automation), Rimilia (accounts receivable automation), Nuxeo (content services platform), Codility (remote first hiring platform) and RealityMine (mobile market research platform).
“We see very high–quality companies being built in the UK,” a spokesperson told us. “The UK is our most important target market and we plan to invest at least half the fund in the UK.”
Kennet V has already started to deploy the capital into new investments in B2B Software-as-a-Service companies. The fund has made investments in four companies in the UK, Europe and the US and has a strong pipeline for further investments.
Kennet specialises in investing in established, high growth technology companies which are founder-owned and ‘bootstrapped’ – built without significant external capital.
Typically, the investment from Kennet is the first external funding that companies receive and is used to finance sales and marketing expansion, particularly internationally.
Michael Elias, Managing Director, Kennet Partners, said: “This fund raise is an important milestone for Kennet and demonstrates the success of our partnership with Edmond de Rothschild, which has provided us access to a range of new investors.
“Our experience investing in technology companies through multiple market cycles, has shown that it is a good time to invest during times of profound change. We therefore believe that the coming 2-3 years will be a very interesting time to deploy a fund.”
Hillel Zidel, Managing Director, Kennet Partners, said: “The current pandemic has significantly accelerated the move to digitisation. COVID has required that people around the world change the way that they live and work.
“These changes are creating a structural shift that is forcing companies to turn to technological solutions. This has created strong longer-term opportunities for software businesses.”
Johnny El-Hachem, CEO, Edmond de Rothschild Private Equity, said: “Convinced that technology plays a critical role in the transformation of our economies and societies, our group has always been committed to promoting the emergence of innovative and value-creating companies.
“We partnered with Kennet, because we liked the dynamism of the team coupled with their strategy of financing businesses providing mission critical technology solutions.
“The COVID crisis has underscored the importance of many of these tools to business continuity.”