Bridgepoint makes infra play with $1.05bn ECP acquisition

ECP is a North American infrastructure investor.

  • Bridgepoint is a private asset growth investor with over $40bn of assets under management
  • The upfront enterprise value is £835 million
  • ECP addition will add to Bridgepoint’s private equity and private debt strategies

Bridgepoint has agreed to buy infrastructure investor Energy Capital Partners (ECP) to build a €57 billion global alternatives asset manager.

ECP is based in Summit, New Jersey.

The upfront enterprise value is £835 million ($1.05 billion; €978 million), comprising 235 million of newly issued Bridgepoint shares, £233 million of cash and £179 million of ECP’s existing debt.

The transaction will be funded with units in a new limited partnership exchangeable for Bridgepoint shares and Bridgepoint’s existing balance sheet resources.

ECP’s partners will become one of Bridgepoint’s largest shareholders, holding 19 percent of Bridgepoint’s shares pre-earn out and up to 25 percent assuming full earn-out.

Blue Owl will convert its share of ECP fee related earnings into Bridgepoint equity and will remain a shareholder in the enlarged group. Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Bank will retain its minority interest in ECP’s fee related earnings.

“The transaction accelerates our scale, leadership and strategic development, enhances the quality of the group’s earnings and margin profile, and provides greater diversification and earnings growth potential for shareholders,” said William Jackson, chairman, Bridgepoint. “As well as the compelling financial rationale for the transaction, Bridgepoint will benefit from the investing expertise of the ECP team, while, at the same time, there are significant opportunities for both of us to work together on initiatives such as adding adjacent strategies and expanding geographically.”

The transaction is expected to close within four to six months.

ECP’s infrastructure business will operate under its existing brand and will be led by its current management and investment team.

Doug Kimmelman, ECP’s senior partner and founder, will lead the infrastructure platform and ECP’s leadership will join Bridgepoint’s executive team, the release added.

Bridgepoint is a private asset growth investor with over $40 billion of assets under management. The firm is based in London.

JP Morgan Cazenove and Morgan Stanley served as lead financial advisors to Bridgepoint, and Simpson Thacher & Bartlett served as legal counsel.

(Note: Bridgepoint owns PEI Group, the publisher of PE Hub and PE Hub Europe.)