Milford Asset Management has always been intensely interested in private equity because of its potential to deliver strong long-term returns for clients.
The Milford Active Growth Fund has been successfully investing in private companies since 2011. These private company investments have contributed positively to the Active Growth Fund over that time.
Milford has built on our private company investment expertise by launching the Milford Private Equity Fund II.
The Fund has a focus on investing in private companies with high growth opportunities and strong management teams. The Fund may also invest in under appreciated subsidiaries of corporations, turnaround opportunities and provide a succession route for founders.
Milford believes there are significant opportunities available for the Private Equity Fund II to deliver strong returns for investors over time, but notes that the Fund is only suitable for wholesale or eligible investors with a higher risk appetite who are willing to forgo liquidity in the quest for potentially higher returns.
Please note that the Milford Private Equity Fund II is now closed to new investment.
The Private Equity Team
Brooke is an Investment Director for Milford’s Funds and co-manages the Milford Private Equity Fund II. He is currently a director of a number of companies on behalf of the Milford Active Growth Fund. Brooke joined Milford in 2012 from Macquarie Securities in New Zealand where he was a Senior Research Analyst covering a variety of sectors including manufacturing, agriculture, mining and oil and gas. Prior to that, Brooke was a Vice President at Morgan Stanley in London, covering Pan-European retail companies. Brooke also worked for the corporate finance and property team of Marks and Spencer in the UK. He qualified as a Chartered Accountant with Ernst & Young and is a CFA Charterholder.
John is an Investment Director for Milford’s Funds and co-manages the Milford Private Equity Fund II. Prior to joining Milford in 2016, John spent four years at Fletcher Building, latterly managing the Firth Masonry, Dricon, and CSP Pacific businesses operating in the concrete and roading technology sectors. This followed stints in strategy and corporate finance at Fletcher Building and prior to that Air New Zealand. The first decade of John’s experience was in principal equity investment and investment banking for Societe Generale and Macquarie Bank (in Sydney and London) working across a range of industry sectors. John holds an LLB (Hons), BA and BCom from the University of Otago and an MBA from Oxford University.
Tom joined the Milford Private Equity team as an Investment Analyst in 2017 and is responsible for the assessment of opportunities, valuations, executing transactions and supporting the management teams of investee companies. Prior to this, Tom had been working in the investment banking team at UBS in Auckland, where he was involved in a number of significant capital markets and private transactions.
Tom holds a Bachelor of Commerce, majoring in Economics and Finance (with First Class Honours) from the University of Canterbury.
Private Equity Investment Committee
The Private Equity Investment Committee is comprised of Brooke Bone, John Johnston, Brian Gaynor, Lester Gray and Jonathan Windust.
Collectively, they have over 100 years of investment knowledge between them. Over half this experience has been focussed on investing in New Zealand private and public markets, with the remainder gained in offshore markets.
Left to right: Lester Gray, John Johnston, Brooke Bone, Jonathan Windust, Brian Gaynor.
Since closing the Milford Private Equity Fund II in December 2016, the Fund has made the following investments:
The Fund has invested approximately $11.0m to acquire a significant minority shareholding of 18.3% in Equipment leasing & Finance Limited (EL&F).
EL&F was formed in September 2016 by the acquisition of Hellaby Holdings’ equipment division (the AB Equipment and NZ Trucks businesses) and merger with Advaro Finance. The business has revenue of approximately $260m.
AB Equipment & NZ Trucks
AB Equipment, formed in 1974 from predecessor companies with a history of over 100 years in New Zealand business, sells and services materials handling, construction and forestry equipment. AB employs 390 employees across 18 locations and operates New Zealand’s largest materials handling lease and rental fleet. NZ Trucks has a national network of truck and crane servicing workshops and part supply centres, with 140 employees. The combined equipment businesses serve over 5,000 customers nationwide.
L&F is an SME focused finance company incorporating; Yoogo, an asset management business which provides high quality vehicle leasing solutions and captive leasing and finance for AB Equipment and NZ Trucks, and Speirs Finance which offers financial solutions to fund equipment and plant via a nationwide network of sales agents. L&F differentiates itself from traditional asset financiers with its core focus on vehicles, equipment and plant and the understanding of these assets and markets inherent in being part of the wider EL&F group.
Together the sales, financing, leasing and servicing operations of the combined group will provide customers with a “one stop shop” provider who intimately knows the transport, materials handling and construction equipment that customers need. The business plan anticipates significant growth in financing receivables by taking advantage of the scope of the combined group.
Coretex operates in the growing telematics industry – providing hardware units into the heavy transport industry to track trucks, driver behaviour and load performance, with an aim of increasing efficiency, accuracy and compliance with laws and regulations.
The recurring nature of the subscription revenue model provides an attractive ongoing revenue stream which continues to grow incrementally as new trucks are added to the platform. Hardware units are generally paid for upfront, but can also be financed over the life of the contracts.
Future requirements for additional traceability and exploiting trends around the Internet of Things mean that penetration of telematics into the transport industry should increase substantially.
Coretex was formed through the merger of International Telematics Limited and Imarda PTY Ltd in 2015. AirTrak, a US based telematics business, was subsequently acquired.
About New Shoots
New Shoots was founded in 2010 by Michelle Pratt and Nikki Prendergast with a vision of creating a childcare operation that combined their years of experience in the sector to create centres that provide the best learning and care outcomes for children, parents and teachers.
New Shoots comprises:
- New Shoots Children’s Centre: a manager of a portfolio of seven purpose built early childhood education centres, with an established pipeline of sites to be opened over the next two-to-three years
- Kerikeri One: owns two parcels of land (Kerikeri and Greenhithe) with intentions to develop early childhood education centres on each
- Curiate: a distributor of early childhood resources to centres in New Zealand.