GFI, Oaktree exit energy efficiency company

The $1bn joint venture has sold Noresco to heating and air conditioning giant Carrier after acquiring the company for $82m less than three years ago.

The GFI Energy Ventures and Oaktree Capital Management energy collaboration has sold energy performance management outfit Noresco to Connecticut-based heating, air conditioning and refrigeration company Carrier for an undisclosed amount.

The joint venture acquired Noresco for $82 million in 2006 when Equitable Resources divested itself of the unit to focus on its core natural gas distribution and supply business.

Noresco, based in Massachusetts, designs, manufactures and operates energy and environmental efficiency projects. The company also provides energy performance contracting and operates central energy plants, serving a customer base that includes the federal and local governments in the US, as well as school districts and commercial and industrial clients.

The company was previously owned by the $1 billion GFI/OCM Power Opportunities Fund II, which held its final close in September 2005.

The fund focuses on the power conversion, energy measurement and transmission and distribution service niches within the energy space primarily in North America.

Los Angeles-based private equity firm GFI and distressed debt specialist Oaktree closed their inaugural co-managed fund on $454 million in 1999.

GFI manages the due diligence, company oversight and exit aspects of the fund, while Oaktree, also based in Los Angeles, assists GFI in the fundraising and investment selection.

Harris Williams & Company advised Noresco and GFI Energy Ventures on the transaction.