Natixis Global AM Affiliate Mirova In Negotiations To Take Majority Stake In Althelia Ecosphere

Jun 29 2017 | 5:24pm ET

The responsible investing affiliate of Natixis Global Asset Management, Mirova, has reportedly entered into discussions with impact investment manager Althelia Ecosphere regarding the acquisition of a majority equity interest in the firm. 

The planned acquisition of Althelia would represent a step forward in Mirova’s ambition to become a leading sustainable alternative asset manager, the company said. The combined firm would create a European platform dedicated to natural capital investing, and would strive to develop innovative investment solutions, through the financing of activities addressing major global environmental challenges such as climate change, protection of landscapes, biodiversity, soil and marine resources. 

Althelia’s technical experience, recognized know-how and four-year track-record in conservation finance would be a great addition to Mirova’s existing project finance capabilities as well as environmental, social, and supply chain expertise. 

The proposed transaction is expected to close in the next few weeks, the company added, with Althelia’s partners subsequently holding a substantial equity portion. A progressive withdrawal mechanism would then align medium-term interests and gradually increase Mirova’s stake in Althelia over the next five years.

“We are pleased to partner with Althelia and have tremendous respect for the experience and talent of the team,” said Philippe Zaouati, CEO of Mirova, in the statement. “We strongly believe that natural capital is the next frontier of impact investment and both specialist skills and a critical size are required to successfully address this nascent but promising market.”

“Joining forces with an entrepreneurial company such as Mirova, backed by a large organization, is a winning choice in terms of business development and an important step to move ecosystem-based finance into the mainstream investment space,” added Sylvain Goupille, founder and director of Althelia. 

Mirova offers a global responsible investing approach with a single offer revolving around 5 pillars: equities, bonds, infrastructure, impact investing, voting and engagement. The firm, a unit of Paris-based investment management giant Natixis Global Asset Management, has €6.9 billion of assets under management. 

Founded in 2011, Althelia Ecosphere is dedicated to sourcing and financing sustainable land use, biodiversity, and ecosystem-based climate activities, with an emphasis on blended value investments that deliver the highest caliber social, environmental and economic performance. The firm manages funds with a diverse portfolio of investments from Africa, South America and Asia that comprise of real assets and environmental services.

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