Exited companies

Norfund creates the greatest development effects by ensuring that its capital is constantly deployed where it contributes most. We strive to be a predictable, long-term investor that does not retain ownership for longer than necessary.

When an investment is made, its duration and the exit strategy are planned at the same time. Typically, Norfund exits equity investments after 5-10 years, debt holdings after 5-7 years and fund investments after 10-12 years. A few investments might be exited earlier or later than planned due to unexpected circumstances.

Capital and profit generated by investments are reinvested in new businesses in which there is a greater need for our risk capital.

In 2020, Norfund made a historic exit selling SN Power to Scatec for a total value of NOK 10.9 billion. However, as the shares were not transferred until January 2021, the realised gain will be booked in 2021 and will not appear in the accounts for 2020.

In 2020, Norfund exited three fund investments: 

SEAF Sichuan Small Investment Fund

Country: China
Business sector: Fund
First investment year: 2000
Investment: NOK 19.9 million
IRR: 6%

SEAF Sichuan Small Investment Fund provided equity and assistance to SMEs in the Chengdu province of China. In 2020, all portfolio companies had been exited and the fund had returned a net IRR of ~6%. Norfund sold our remaining interests in the fund at a nominal value in 2020. There is some potential value and payment due to the fund remaining, and Norfund has secured the right to further distributions as if the fund were still in place, with SEAF undertaking to distribute further proceeds pro rata to the investors, in line with their initial ownership percentage.

Horizon Equity Partners Fund III

Country: South Africa
Business sector: Fund
First investment year: 2007
Investment: NOK 22.5 million
IRR: -3%

Horizon Equity Partners Fund III was a South African equity capital fund that invested in SMEs in South Africa. Norfund committed NOK 22.5 million for a 9% stake in the fund. Other investors included DFIs such CDC, Finnfund, Obviam and IFC, and some private South African investors. The fund invested in a total of seven South African SMEs. While several companies performed well, the fund faced challenges due to South African macroeconomic headwinds and liquidity issues and the net final result to Norfund was -2.9% IRR. Norfund exited the fund in 2020.

Fanisi Venture Capital Fund

Region: East Africa (Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda)
Business sector: Fund
First investment year: 2009
Investment: NOK 96.5 million
IRR: -27%

Fanisi Venture Capital Fund’s principal objective was to achieve long-term capital appreciation through equity and quasi-equity investments in small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) that were start-up, early stage and growth-oriented. Management was an entirely African team with particular appeal to local capital and African entrepreneurs. Norfund was the anchor investor and played an instrumental role in the establishment and further development for the purpose of addressing a market gap. Unfortunately, the strategy proved too ambitious, and the fund went into liquidation in January 2019, after nine years of operation. The fund will ultimately return only about 25 % of the capital drawn from investors.

In 2020, a further four loans were repaid by companies within Norfund’s active portfolio.