The Ireland Strategic Investment Fund (ISIF) may take equity stakes in Irish businesses to help them overcome Brexit, and is willing to inject more than €10m into individual companies.
Ireland’s sovereign wealth fund said it would use its capital to support companies with UK exposure. Isif director Eugene O’Callaghan said the fund would be more likely to make the €10m-plus investments directly, with smaller investments probably coming via other funds or partners in which Isif has invested.
“We will be looking to use our commercial capital to support businesses which have exposure to the UK. We are a provider of long-term capital, so the idea would be to provide the capital to give the companies time and the space to develop alternative products or markets to diversify beyond the UK,” said Mr O’Callaghan.
“Depending then on the nature of the business strategy, it might be equity, it might be debt. We will invest whatever capital is appropriate to the needs of the business at the time.”
Mr O’Callaghan said, however, that Isif would not be providing short-term capital to help businesses with a cash-flow issue pay bills right after Brexit.
No specific amount of money has been set aside for these investments, which will depend on whether there is demand for them.
“Brexit-related investments will be on a commercial basis and subject to Isif’s normal due diligence and approval procedures, which includes an assessment to ensure that the investment is compliant with State aid rules,” Isif said.
The EU Commission has previously said it would support Irish authorities with “pragmatic and efficient support solutions”, in line with EU State aid law.
Mr O’Callaghan also said that Isif has signed a deal with the World Bank to help Irish companies sell products into emerging markets.
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