Former Goldman exec launches PlumTree Capital

The firm will focus on providing structured credit for SMEs that are unable to access finance from traditional sources.

A former Goldman Sachs executive has founded PlumTree Capital to provide finance solutions for SMEs in the UK and Europe.

Adel Ghobsi launched PlumTree in May this year to provide capital to small businesses that are struggling to obtain loans from more traditional sources due to prevailing economic conditions and regulatory reforms.

The firm will adopt a thematic approach to investing, focusing on key sectors including insurance, payment systems, mental health and bankruptcy catalysts. The firm will also look to offer structured financing covering senior debt, mezzanine and equity-like instruments, taking at least an observer board seat in the companies it supports.

“The current crisis is particularly affecting smaller business, and whilst banks are retreating (and will further retreat as Basel IV comes into application), no one is stepping in to fill in the funding gap,” Ghobsi told PDI.

The firm has secured a €100 million advisory mandate from a large, US-based institution with an accordion to take it to €150 million. It hopes to add discretionary capital mandates in the near future with the intention to launch a closed-ended fund in 2024.

Ghobsi spent almost four years at Goldman Sachs in its principal investment area team as an executive director. Prior to that he spent four years at HPS Investment Partners as a vice president and has also held roles at Investcorp and Citi. He will lead the firm as its CIO and is expecting to announce additional senior hires in the coming months.