Gresham to buy transport and logistics businesses

The Australian private equity firm is buying five family-run businesses in one platform investment, and is planning to raise A$600m for its third fund.

Gresham Private Equity, the private equity arm of Gresham Investment House, is set to buy five unnamed logistics and transportation businesses in Australia with an enterprise value of A$200 million ($185 million; €117 million) including A$130 million of debt.

Roy McKelvie, chief executive officer and managing director at Gresham Private Equity, told PEO that the investments are being made in companies that engage in a mixture of activities such as long-distance line haul, wharf and port services, warehousing and logistics management, but declined to disclose their names.

“We’ve been looking at the industry for a number of years,” he said, adding that Gresham plans to incorporate the five acquired companies into one larger entity.

The investment was made from Gresham’s second fund that closed in 2004 and is “pretty much” fully deployed, said McKelvie.

Gresham is also planning to raise its third private equity fund. The A$600 million fund will invest in mid-market buyout deals across the country. The fund will not have a pre-allocated sector focus and will make investments in diverse sectors, barring property, McKelvie said.

The firm’s first two funds closed on A$200 million and A$325 million. Gresham’s fundraising plans follow Pacific Equity Partners closure of its A$4 billion buyout fund last month.