Foresight Group expands into Ireland with new office and team

The Dublin team will support the deployment and management of the AIB Foresight SME impact fund.

  • The AIB Foresight SME impact fund will provide €2 million to €5 million in investment capital to SMEs 
  • Foresight is set to open two offices in the UK, in Leeds and Newcastle to support recent fund launches
  • Barclay Clibborn joins the firm as principal of the fund and Philip Gardiner joins as investment director

Foresight Group has announced on Thursday the opening of a new office in Dublin. The office is Foresight’s first on the island of Ireland and will be staffed by a new team in support of the AIB Foresight SME impact fund. The team will source, execute and manage investments for the fund.

The AIB Foresight SME Impact Fund will provide €2m to €5m investments to SMEs in Ireland and Northern Ireland, with capacity to make larger investments. It will support businesses execute their net zero plans and aims to raise €75 million.

Barclay Clibborn has joined Foresight as principal of the fund and Philip Gardiner has joined as investment director. Clibborn has over 20 years’ experience, most recently as head of strategy and corporate development at Bord Gáis Energy. Gardiner has over 10 years’ experience financing SMEs, with eight years at private equity investor Renatus Capital Partners, where he was responsible for managing investments in growing Irish SMEs.

“Our presence in Dublin offers us a significant foothold in a critical market,” said James Livingston, partner at Foresight Group. “In Barclay and Phillip, we have two highly capable, experienced and respected professionals joining to build our presence in the market.”

Foresight Group is a London-based investment firm with £12.4 billion ($14.2 billion; €14.3 billion) of assets under management. Its private equity team manages 10 regionally focused investment funds across the UK and an SME impact fund supporting Irish SMEs. Foresight Capital Management manages four strategies across six investment vehicles with an AUM of over £1.6 billion.