Development tools maker JCB’s inheritor launches hydrogen-focused fund

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Jo Bamford, a family member of one of the largest construction machinery manufacturers in the world, co-founded an investment fund focused on the hydrogen sector.

HYCAP has raised more than £ 200 million ($ 277 million) to invest mainly in UK companies to increase the production and supply of renewable hydrogen, according to a statement Monday. Mr. Bamford founded the fund with the multi-family office Vedra Partners, co-founded by Max Gottschalk.

The UK-managed Luxembourg-based fund aims to raise £ 1 billion and has already identified more than three dozen potential investments.

“People in the financial world are really excited to go green,” said Bamford, 43, adding that his family has invested about £ 100 million in his newest company. “At the moment there is not much in the world of hydrogen in terms of ‘how do I actually invest?'”

The move is made as hydrogen becomes an increasingly popular option to combat climate change.

In the UK, Prime Minister Boris Johnson is under pressure to show how his government will cut emissions to net zero by 2050 after announcing a series of greenhouse gas reduction targets. Last month, Economy Minister Kwasi Kwarteng unveiled a strategy that aims to free up a total of £ 4 billion in investment in hydrogen production and secure 9,000 jobs by 2030.

“We have to embed this in our economy,” said Mr Bamford on the hydrogen issue.

Mr. Bamford also owns a manufacturer of double decker buses that run on hydrogen and a company focused on creating a network for the fuel. He previously worked for JCB, which was run by his father Anthony, but left the company about five years ago to focus on hydrogen.

The Bamford family has approximately $ 10 billion in net worth, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

HYCAP aims to complete the next round of fundraising by the end of this year and will make initial investments in the next few months, said Gottschalk, 49, who also co-founded Gottex Fund Management.

Updated: September 6, 2021, 8:54 am