3i Infrastructure is selling a 16.9% stake in offshore emergency-vessels provider ESVAGT to three unnamed institutional investors for DKK785m (€105.5m).

The London-listed infrastructure investment company said it has signed an agreement to sell the stake in the Danish sea-rescue and services company to 3i Aura, a newly-established vehicle managed by 3i Investments and funded by the three investors.

Following the completion of the deal, 3i Infrastructure’s stake in ESVAGT will reduce to 83.1%.

ESVAGT provides emergency rescue and response vessels to the offshore energy industry in and around the North Sea and Barents Sea.

3i Infrastructure said the proceeds from the sale will be used to repay part of the company’s outstanding revolving credit facility balance.

In December last year, 3i Infrastructure took full ownership of ESVAGT as it bought the 50% stake it did not already own for £268m (€314m) from AMP Capital, with whom it jointly acquired ESVAGT in 2015.

3i Infrastructure had held a strategic review of its investment in the Danish company last year, inviting offers for its stake in the company, but decided against selling.

At the time, the company said binding offers for 100% of the equity were received but “not at a compelling price”, and so it elected to offer to buy AMP Capital’s stake. 

Phil White, managing partner and head of infrastructure at 3i Investments, said the syndication of a 16.9% stake in ESVAGT to 3i Aura helps 3i Infrastructure to maintain a balanced portfolio and provides useful additional liquidity.

“We are pleased to have attracted three high-quality investors alongside us as we continue to work with ESVAGT’s management team to take advantage of its future growth potential, both in Europe and the US.”

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