Greenbelt Capital Partners III, effectively the emerging manager’s debut fund, is targeting $750 million, according to Form D documents filed earlier this year. Threadmark is the placement agent.
Opening its doors in January 2022, Greenbelt is run by CEO and managing partner Chris Manning and managing partner Glenn Jacobson, who previously oversaw energy investing at Trilantic. Partners Andy Hopping and Chris Murphy and principal Sam Graham worked alongside them.
The new shop retains a link with Trilantic, sharing organizational resources and providing guidance on legacy energy investments.
In their prior roles, Manning and his colleagues invested in oil and gas, midstream infrastructure and, more recently, the energy transition. Greenbelt will build on dealmaking in the latter area, with an emphasis on so-called new energy economy opportunities.
The plan is to invest in sectors contributing to long-term shifts in energy production and consumption, such as renewable generation, grid enablement, energy efficiency and electrification. Targets are North American mid-market companies in which Greenbelt can make control and significant minority investments of $50 million to $150 million.
Recent deals provide further clues as to the strategy’s focus. In 2022, for example, Greenbelt led an investment in Ion Solar, a rooftop solar sales and installations provider, with participation from Trilantic, Blackstone Credit and Energy Impact Partners.
The firm also joined a $750 million growth investment led by TPG Rise Climate in Intersect Power, a utility-scale solar and storage developer, and a $135 million growth investment led by GIC in Powin, a battery energy storage systems integrator.
Greenbelt in the same year led a majority recapitalization of Unirac, a solar photovoltaic mounting solutions manufacturer. Trilantic invested in the deal, while existing sponsor Tenex Capital Management retained an interest.
Even when times are good, emerging managers face obstacles to getting the attention of LPs. In today’s fundraising market, challenges have multiplied as cash-poor LPs reserve most of their limited capital for incumbent GPs, typically at the expense of new relationships.
Greenbelt may have an edge in these circumstances because of the more than 20-year track record of its team and Trilantic’s on-going support. In addition, the firm’s new energy economy strategy should appeal to LPs looking for opportunities aligned with their ESG and net-zero policies.
In June, Greenbelt announced receiving a strategic minority investment from Capital Constellation, a GP stakes platform managed by Wafra.
Trilantic was established in 2009 by founding partners who acquired Lehman Brothers Merchant Banking from the estate of Lehman Brothers. It is raising a seventh mid-market buyout offering targeted to bring in $3 billion, Buyouts reported.
Greenbelt declined to provide a comment on this story.