Gresham House invests £63m into UK full-stack high-speed internet provider
Gresham House, the specialist alternative asset manager, has invested £63m into full-stack UK internet service provider Telcom Group through its British Strategic Investment Fund (BSIF).
The commitment will enable Manchester-based Telcom Group to accelerate its delivery of ultrafast and reliable fibre connectivity to commercial and residential properties across the UK, underpinned by its own network infrastructure. Outside Manchester, the group’s focus will be on building fibre networks in key Northern and Midlands powerhouse cities.
BSIF was established to invest specifically in the sustainable infrastructure and housing sectors, both identified by the UK government as structurally important areas requiring local investment. As a closed-ended fund with a 12-year time horizon, BSIF invests with a long-term view into these important sectors.
Telcom Group was established in 2014 and operates three brands – Telcom, which provides ultrafast internet to commercial properties, ClearFibre, which delivers ultrafast internet to residential properties, and WeFibre, which provides low cost fibre connectivity to social housing and rural housing developments. The group also owns full-fibre infrastructure via Telcom Infrastructure and infrastructure services through Pioneer.
Stevie Ingamells, associate director, sustainable infrastructure, who led the deal for Gresham House, says: “The Telcom team has impressed us with its customer-driven approach to delivering high-quality fibre service to both commercial and residential settings. The business’ repeat customer base demonstrates its expertise in providing gigabit connectivity where and when needed, and will allow our investors to benefit from a reliable recurring revenue stream.”
Peter Bachmann, managing director, sustainable infrastructure at Gresham House and BSIF fund manager, adds:
“Telcom’s ‘full-stack’ approach is highly differentiated, as it offers customers a genuinely bespoke, technology-driven broadband service. As Telcom looks to expand its coverage, this should appeal to the many British businesses relying on good connectivity to operate efficiently.
“Given its urban and multiple-dwelling unit focus, the addition of Telcom to the Gresham House family of broadband providers also compliments our investments in rural broadband providers and contributes to our wider push for greater digital inclusion across the UK. Reliable high-speed broadband infrastructure is necessary to power the British economy and enable increased social inclusion – through remote learning and working, and tele-health.”
Christopher Baldock, Telcom Group’s chairman, comments:
“The board of Telcom is delighted to be working with Gresham House in what is a pivotal moment in the company’s evolution, as it will enable the acceleration of our planned roll-out of high-speed connectivity across all of our target markets.”
Shaun Gibson, Telcom Group co-founder and chief executive officer, says:
“The Gresham House investment comes after a period of hard work by the management team and board in structuring the company for a period of high-level sustained growth. This is a tremendously exciting time for Telcom employees and shareholders, as we continue building our great company for the long term and obsessing over our customers.”
“The investment allows us to scale up our unique full-stack platform, while accelerating our mission to create a more connected world by building full-fibre networks, reducing costs, and empowering communities.”
Corporate finance firm Oakley Advisory and law firm Gunnercooke advised Telcom Group on the deal. Finance and tax consultancy RSM UK, management consultancy Analysys Mason and law firm Shoosmiths advised Gresham House.
Founded by a team of experienced telecoms professionals and software developers, Telcom Group is a full-fibre, full stack Internet Service Provider based in Manchester. Telcom’s mission is to provide affordable, ultrafast internet across the UK. Telcom strongly believe that connectivity is a basic human right, which when readily available, is a catalyst for economic growth, technological innovation and empowerment, with life-changing impact. Established in 2014 as a Manchester based business focused provider, Telcom Group has since expanded with the addition of residential managed service division ClearFibre (https://clearfibre.uk/), FTTH broadband division WeFibre (https://wefibre.com/), full fibre division Telcom Infrastructure (https://infrastructure.telcom.uk/) and civil engineering division Pioneer (https://pioneerutilities.uk/).
About Gresham House
Gresham House is a specialist alternative asset management group, dedicated to sustainable investments across a range of strategies, with expertise across forestry, housing, sustainable infrastructure, renewable energy and battery storage, public and private equity.
Our origins stretch back to 1857, while our focus is on the future and the long term. Quoted on the London Stock Exchange (GHE:LN) we actively manage c.£4.0 billion of assets (as at 31 December 2020) on behalf of institutions, family offices, charities and endowments, private individuals, and their advisers. We act responsibly within a culture of empowerment that encourages individual flair and entrepreneurial thinking.
As a signatory to the UN-supported Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI), our vision is to always make a positive social or environmental impact, while delivering on our commitments to shareholders, employees, and investors. www.greshamhouse.com
The £340m British Strategic Investment Fund strategy (BSIF) was established to invest specifically in the Sustainable Infrastructure and housing sectors, both identified by the UK Government as structurally important areas requiring local investment. As a closed-ended fund with a 12-year time horizon, BSIF invests with a long-term view into these important sectors and actively seeks to address environmental and societal challenges.