Granville to take on PosTel investment

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POSTEL, the investment manager of the BT and Post Office pension schemes, is handing over the management of nearly pounds 200m of unquoted investments to Granville, a small investment banking firm, writes Paul Durman.

The two pension schemes will take a 50 per cent stake in Granville Private Equity Managers and commit a further pounds 50m for new investment in unquoted companies over the next three years.

Together with its own unquoted portfolio, Granville will have more than pounds 300m of private equity investments under management.

Alastair Ross Goobey, PosTel's chief executive, said it had admired the Granville team for some years.

Granville's relationship with PosTel, which looks after about pounds 25bn of investments, stems from the pension fund manager's 16 per cent stake. Friends Provident, the life office, and the British Gas pension scheme also own 16 per cent stakes, with the remaining shares held by Granville's 120 staff.

Most of the portfolio being taken on by Granville is spread between about 80 private equity funds run by other investment managers. With the new funds from the BT and Post Office pension schemes, Granville has pounds 70m available for direct investment.

Michael Proudlock, chief executive of Granville Private Equity Managers, said the partnership with PosTel would double to pounds 50m the size of deal the firm could consider.