Enva set to be sold to US private equity firm

Enva is set to be sold to a US private equity firm, after the UK-owned Exponent announced it has agreed to sell the company to Miami-based I Squared Capital.

Enva is one of the largest supplies of wood to biomass plants after acquiring a number of recycling companies

The move means Enva will follow Biffa and Viridor in being owned by American private equity companies if the deal goes ahead. Interest in the UK waste sector has been growing in recent years, partly due to its growing importance in the climate debate and rising environmental, social and governance (see letsrecycle.com story).

Completion of the Enva acquisition by I Squared is subject to regulatory approvals and is anticipated to complete in Q2 2023.


Tom Walsh, CEO at Enva

Enva was created in 2017 through the acquisition of the environmental division of DCC Plc, the Ireland based FTSE 100 company.

It now has 1,600 employees across its 34 operational facilities in the UK and Ireland. Enva acquired several wood recycling companies across the UK in 2018 and 2019, including Hadfields, WM Tracey and Wastecycle. It now supplies a large amount of material to biomass plants which has proved to be a lucrative market.

Enva also owns a battery recycling company and a waste oils business in its portfolio, which also spans water and industrial services.

Tom Walsh, CEO at Enva, said: “Since partnering with Exponent, Enva has developed a portfolio of innovative waste-to-product technologies to support our customers, acquired a range of synergistic businesses, and brought on a strong bench of talented managers to support key parts of the business. This has allowed us to develop our value added, circular economy-driven proposition and has cemented our position as a leading resource recovery platform in the UK and Ireland. I am delighted to begin the next step on our journey with I Squared Capital.”


Exponent owns several companies including Moonpig, Quorn, Trainline, and Wowcher.

During its ownership of Enva, Exponent says it has supported Enva to grow organically and through market consolidation, having completed 10 add on transactions since acquiring the business.

Exponent added that between 2017 and 2023, Enva achieved significant revenue growth and delivered an EBITDA growth of 12%.

“A key driver of this growth was the development of a market leading sustainability proposition, including significant investment in new and upgraded waste recovery solutions that are today used by Enva’s customers to help achieve their sustainability goals while maximising the recovery of waste for use in the development of valuable secondary materials,” the group added

James Gunton, partner at Exponent, said: “We are proud to have been part of Enva’s successful journey so far under Tom’s leadership. Under our ownership, the business has grown into a leading platform in its markets, doubled profits, and introduced a wide range of sustainable waste recovery and recycling solutions. We are delighted with the outcome and are confident Enva will continue to thrive with I Squared Capital’s backing.”

Exponent was advised by Rothschild & Co, Allen & Overy, KPMG and OC&C.

We are proud to have been part of Enva’s successful journey so far

  • James Gunton, Exponent

I Squared Capital

I Squared Capital is a private equity firm focusing on global infrastructure investments. The company owns companies such as Irish power company Viridian and Peru-based Orazul Energy Egenor.

I Squared Capital has more than £30 billion in assets under management focused on investing in North America, Europe, Asia, and Latin America. Headquartered in Miami, the firm has more than 215 professionals across its offices in Miami, Hong Kong, London, New Delhi, Singapore, Taipei, and Sydney.

The company did not add a comment to the announcement as the deal has not yet been formalised.

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