Pension-backed listed cleantech fund readies portfolio sell-off

Low Carbon Accelerator identifies shortlist of buyers

Low Carbon Accelerator, the London-listed cleantech investor whose investors include Derbyshire County Council and the South Yorkshire Pension Fund, says it has moved forward in its plans to sell off its entire portfolio.
LCA has approached a shortlist of potential buyers – and says it expects indicative offers to be received by the end of July. It plans to conclude the sale by the end of its financial year ending, November 30.
It said in a statement: “Consistent with previous announcements, the company intends to disburse cash proceeds realised from any sale to investors.”
Derbyshire and South Yorkshire have stakes of 4.5% and 4.3% respectively. The largest investor is the Royal Bank of Scotland, with just over 45%.
LCA, which raised £55m (€70.5m) at launch in 2006, said in April that it had appointed investment bank Cogent Partners to advise on offloading its assets. It also announced it was terminating its agreement with itsGuernsey-based investment manager Low Carbon Investors Ltd.

It had said in February that it would make “planned realisations” to deliver liquidity to shareholders, following a 53.3% decline in net asset value in the year to the end of November 2011.

The shares are trading around 7.38 pence, after being near 100p in 2007.

Separately, two private equity funds run by J.P. Morgan have slightly increased their stake in Aqua Resources Fund Ltd., the embattled listed water fund that is listed on the London Stock Exchange (LSE) and domiciled in Guernsey.

According to filings, the funds lifted their stake in Aqua to 15.69% in early July from 13.77% in early February. The bank had no comment.

Last month, it emerged that Aqua’s shareholders – including 30% owner the West Midlands Pension Scheme – had rejected the fund’s accounts for 2011.

With reporting by Jan Wagner