Lord Browne returns to stock market as Riverstone unveils £1.5bn IPO

Lord Browne of Madingley, the former BP chief executive, is to return to the London Stock Exchange after his latest venture, the private equity firm Riverstone, announced plans to raise up to £1.5bn by listing a new energy vehicle in the City.

Riverstone specialises in energy investments and is best known as the principal backer of Cuadrilla, the UK's most prominent fracking company whose oil exploration activities in the West Sussex village of Balcombe have met with high-profile protests. Cuadrilla was also behind the fracking that was blamed for earth tremors in the Blackpool area in 2011.

Lord Browne, who ran BP between 1995 and 2007 and left after lying in court about his relationship with a man, is a partner at Riverstone and will be a board director of the listed vehicle, Riverstone Energy Ltd (REL). He is also the chairman of Cuadrilla.

The new company, whose shares are expected to start trading on 29 October, will invest across the global energy industry, focusing on exploration and production, according to the announcement.

REL is raising £550m through a placing with five "cornerstone" investors including McNair Group, owned by Robert McNair, who also owns the Houston Texans NFL team. KFI, a private investment vehicle of Louis Bacon, the founder of Moore Capital Management, and the privately owned Hunt Oil are also investors.

The flotation, which is being co-ordinated by Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan Cazenove, is part of a trend in which private equity firms use public markets to access fresh capital from retail investors.

KKR, the legendary US leveraged buyout specialist, is in the process of setting up two mutual funds investing in various types of debt.

Sir Robert Wilson, the chairman of REL, said: "Riverstone Energy Ltd presents a unique opportunity for public market investors to gain exposure to the energy sector via Riverstone."

Lord Browne has been a partner of Riverstone since leaving BP six years ago. Apart from chairing Cuadrilla, in which Riverstone has a 44 per cent stake, he co-heads the world's largest renewable energy fund, with $3.5bn in equity.

But Riverstone is much better known for its involvement in fracking – the controversial practice which releases oil and gas from shale by blasting a mixture of chemicals, water and sand into the rock. Cuadrilla is at the forefront of Britain's fledgling fracking industry, the future of which is still highly uncertain but which investors hope could be the country's next boom industry. However, it is facing widespread opposition on concerns that it can cause earth tremors and pollute the water supply.

Lord Browne also chairs the Tate Gallery board of trustees and serves on several advisory boards. He is an adviser to Mikhail Fridman, the Russian oligarch who was a partner to BP in its TNK-BP joint venture.

Since Riverstone was founded in 2000 it has raised about $25bn of cash through seven private investment funds. It has committed more than $20bn to about 100 investments in North and South America, Europe, Africa and Asia.

Over the summer, Riverstone agreed to pay the US producer Apache Corp $3.75bn (£2.33bn) for its oil and gas field assets in the Gulf of Mexico.

News
Denny Miller in 1959 remake of Tarzan, the Ape Man
people
Arts and Entertainment
Cheryl despairs during the arena auditions
tvX Factor review: Drama as Cheryl and Simon spar over girl band

News
Piers Morgan tells Scots they might not have to suffer living on the same island as him if they vote ‘No’ to Scottish Independence
news
News
i100Exclusive interview with the British analyst who helped expose Bashar al-Assad's use of Sarin gas
PROMOTED VIDEO
Sport
Angel Di Maria celebrates his first goal for Manchester United against QPR
Football4-0 victory is team's first win under new manager Louis van Gaal
Arts and Entertainment
art
News
newsIn short, yes
Arts and Entertainment
Rob James-Collier, who plays under-butler Thomas Barrow, admitted to suffering sleepless nights over the Series 5 script
tv'Thomas comes right up to the abyss', says the actor
Arts and Entertainment
Calvin Harris claimed the top spot in this week's single charts
music
Sport
BoxingVideo: The incident happened in the very same ring as Tyson-Holyfield II 17 years ago
News
Groundskeeper Willie has backed Scottish independence in a new video
people
Arts and Entertainment
The Doctor poses the question of whether we are every truly alone in 'Listen'
tvReview: Possibly Steven Moffat's most terrifying episode to date
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
News
i100
Life and Style
Cara Delevigne at the TopShop Unique show during London Fashion Week
fashion
News
The life-sized tribute to Amy Winehouse was designed by Scott Eaton and was erected at the Stables Market in Camden
peopleBut quite what the singer would have made of her new statue...
Sport
England's Andy Sullivan poses with his trophy and an astronaut after winning a trip to space
sport
News
peopleThe actress has agreed to host the Met Gala Ball - but not until 2015
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

SQL Developer - Watford/NW London - £280 - £320 p/d - 6 months

£280 - £320 per day: Ashdown Group: The Ashdown Group have been engaged by a l...

Senior BA - Insurance **URGENT**

£400 - £450 Per Day: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: **URGENT CONTRACT ROLE**...

Training Coordinator / Resource Planner - City, London

£35000 - £38000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Training Coordinator / Pl...

Data Governance Manager (Solvency II) – Contract – Up to £450 daily rate, 6 month (may go Permanent)

£400 - £450 Per Day: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: We are currently looking...

Day In a Page

These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

The Imitation Game, film review
England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week
The fall of Rome? Cash-strapped Italy accused of selling its soul to the highest bidder

The fall of Rome?

Italy's fears that corporate-sponsored restoration projects will lead to the Disneyfication of its cultural heritage
Glasgow girl made good

Glasgow girl made good

Kelly Macdonald was a waitress when she made Trainspotting. Now she’s taking Manhattan
Sequins ahoy as Strictly Come Dancing takes to the floor once more

Sequins ahoy as Strictly takes to the floor once more

Judy Murray, Frankie Bridge and co paired with dance partners
Wearable trainers and other sporty looks

Wearable trainers and other sporty looks

Alexander Wang pumps it up at New York Fashion Week
The landscape of my imagination

The landscape of my imagination

Author Kate Mosse on the place that taught her to tell stories