DunPort raises €335m for small business loans, with state and EU backing

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Irish asset manager DunPort Capital Management has raised a total of €335 million for small business loans in Ireland and the UK.

The fund is backed by €70m from the European Investment Fund (EIF), the EU’s dedicated small business lender, and €95m from the Irish Strategic Investment Fund (ISIF).

The Oak Corporate Credit fund, launched last July, has already lent around 90 million euros to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) with revenues between 1 and 10 million euros.

Support from the EU and the Irish state increases the size of the fund by €255 million when it was initially closed last September.

“We continue to see strong and sustained demand for flexible debt solutions from a wide range of advisers, sponsors and business owners in Ireland and the UK,” said Pat Walsh, Director executive of DunPort.

“The additional capital, which includes a significant commitment from the European Investment Fund, will facilitate the continued support of SMEs in our core markets.”

The EIF subscription marks the first investment in a diversified debt fund in Ireland by the specialist venture finance provider. The EIF is part of the European Investment Bank, the long-term lending arm of the EU.

Oak’s deal with the EIF is backed by an EIB guarantee fund, part of the EU’s €750 billion pandemic program agreed in 2020.

“Through this investment, we will help support the economic recovery of Irish businesses and drive growth, innovation and jobs in Ireland,” said Alain Godard, EIF’s Chief Executive.

Since its creation in 2017, DunPort has already deployed 440 million euros on 43 different transactions with 27 companies.

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