UK-based private equity firm Foresight Group has invested £3.25 million (€3.59 million; $4.6 million) in @Futsal, a company that operates indoor pitches for Futsal, the fast-paced indoor version of association football.
The investment sees Foresight reunited with the former management team of Covion, a Foresight-backed facilities management company which was sold to construction and engineering firm Balfour Beatty for £33 million in 2007. Foresight said it achieved an 84 percent internal rate of return with a 4.4 times return on its Covion investment over two and a half years.
Managing director of @Futsal and qualified football coach Frank Rodriguez was one of Covion’s founding directors.
“The popularity of small sided football, and in particular Futsal, around the world, is a clear indication of the future potential for @Futsal in bringing this new leisure pursuit to the UK,” said Chris Price, investment manager at Foresight, in a statement.
@Futsal currently has one site, a three-pitch facility in Swindon, Wiltshire. With the latest capital injection, the company intends to roll-out a chain of indoor football centres across the UK, with the aim of opening 30 sites over the next four years.
The investment in @Futsal is made from across various Foresight funds. The firm has around £200 million under management and invests in clean technology infrastructure opportunities as well as small buyouts in more traditional sectors.