Battery’s newest partner talks European tech; NorthEdge sells cloud tech firm to Marlin

NorthEdge sold a majority stake in Cloud Technology Solutions Group (CTS) to Marlin Equity Partners

Good morning Eurohubsters, Craig McGlashan here with Tuesday’s Dealflow.

Before we dive into the day’s dealmaking news, I’m very happy to announce that Irien Joseph has joined the PE Hub Europe team as assistant reporter. Irien will be responsible for our news briefs.

When not reporting, Irien is an avid reader – she’s currently hooked on Min Jin Lee’s historical fiction book Pachinko. If you’d like to send over any press releases – or chat about Pachinko ­– you can reach her on

News-wise today, we have an exclusive chat with Zak Ewen, Battery Ventures’ newest partner, about the European tech industry. Staying with tech, we then look at NorthEdge selling its majority stake in a cloud tech firm to Marlin Equity Partners, the culmination of Lukoil’s planned sale of its Sicilian refinery, a strategic investment from Bregal Sagemount and finally an Abris portfolio company making an add-on.

Battery boost. Battery Ventures has promoted software investor Zak Ewen to partner. Ewen will help manage the London office as Battery aims to expand in Europe – in every metric, he told PE Hub Europe.

“We’d love to increase our portfolio footprint,” said Ewen, who joined Battery in 2010. “We’d love to help our existing portfolio companies grow here, make more acquisitions etc, and to also do more new investments, like the Vimcar and Avrios combination.”

Battery last week made a combined growth-equity investment in Berlin’s Vimcar and Zurich’s Avrios, a pair of cloud-software providers for the fleet-management sector.

We’ll have more in-depth coverage on that investment later in the week – watch this space.

Meanwhile, check out the full interview with Ewen to hear where he believes Europe has an edge on the rest of the world in software and tech and which sub-sectors he’s excited about in 2023.

Alongside Ewen’s promotion, Battery also announced that John Raguin, a long-time software industry executive and former CEO and president of Guidewire Software, will re-join Battery as an executive in residence. He will offer operational guidance to Battery’s portfolio software companies in Europe and the US, including Avrios and Vimcar.

Raguin was previously an executive in residence at Battery from 2011 to 2013.

In the cloud. NorthEdge has sold a majority stake in Cloud Technology Solutions Group (CTS) to Marlin Equity Partners. The deal included a “material” reinvestment into Cloud Technology Solutions Group from NorthEdge Fund II and NorthEdge Fund III, alongside Marlin, and it delivered a “strong” return for NorthEdge II, according to the firm.

Based in Manchester in England, CTS consists of two companies. CTS is a provider of Google Cloud professional and managed services and CloudM is a provider of Google Workspace/M365 migration and management software.

Check out full coverage of the deal here, including more on Marlin’s plans for CTS.

Oil deal. We’ve been covering the potential sale of Lukoil’s Sicilian refinery for a while – including when US private equity firm Crossbridge Energy Partners looked like the frontrunner to make a deal with the Russian energy company – and that story reached its end this week.

Lukoil announced that it had reached an agreement with GOI Energy, an energy sector arm of ARGUS New Energy Fund, for the latter to buy ISAB, its Italian refining, gasification and electricity cogeneration company.

The deal is slated to complete by the end of March, subject to conditions such as approvals from authorities – “particularly the Italian government”, according to a Lukoil statement.

As part of the deal, GOI Energy formed a partnership with Trafigura, an international trader of oil and petroleum products, “which secures uninterrupted feedstock supplies to the refinery and provides for production offtake as well as necessary working capital level”, according to the statement.

Minority stake. Bregal Sagemount has made a strategic growth investment in Enhesa, a provider of regulatory and sustainability intelligence. As part of the transaction, Sagemount will acquire ICG’s minority stake in Enhesa, with existing investor CGE Partners retaining its majority stake in the company.

Enhesa provides standardised, centralised regulatory content to multinational corporations with the use of data sets, AI-powered analytics, and subject matter experts. The company offers compliance intelligence in over 40 languages across more than 300 jurisdictions. Enhesa has its global headquarters in Brussels and its US headquarters in Arlington, Virginia.

Read full coverage of the deal here.

Absorbed. Abris Capital Partners portfolio company Velvet CARE acquired Almus, a Polish family-owned tissue converting business.

Słomniki-based Almus manufactures toilet paper and kitchen towels, offering products to branded and private label categories. The company has five converting lines with a total capacity of 70,000 tonnes annually.

Abris acquired Klucze, Poland-headquartered Velvet CARE in 2018. Under Abris’ ownership, Velvet CARE has focused on production efficiency, flexibility and automation, and improving its competitive positioning across all product categories, according to Abris.

Find out about Abris’ other plans for Velvet CARE here.

That’s it from me – I’ll be back with you tomorrow.