Circular economy

The concept of a circular economy entails gradually decoupling economic activity and growth from the use of finite resources. It is based on the principles of reducing waste and pollution through innovative design, keeping materials in use and regenerating natural systems.

Case studies

Weener Plastics

Private Equity

Developing more sustainable plastic packaging

Plastic materials have developed a negative reputation due to low recycling rates and their leakage in the environment. Unfortunately, alternatives to plastics are not always sustainable. Ensuring the responsible use of this material therefore requires a coordinated response from all stakeholders involved in the plastics lifecycle, increasing the number of products made from recycled materials or, where this is not feasible, designing products that can be processed efficiently to maximise material recovery through waste management and recycling. Investment in new packaging designs and technologies is an essential part of this shift.

Weener Plastics (‘WP’) is a leading manufacturer of innovative plastic packaging systems for fast moving consumer goods companies. It supplies the world’s leading A-brands and private label players and focuses on the design, development and manufacturing of value added caps, valve closures and roll-on balls for the personal care, food and beverage, and home care market.

WP is fully committed to playing an active role in supporting the transformation to a circular economy. The company has set out a clear ambition for all of its products to be recyclable, re-usable or re-fillable by 2025, with zero waste to landfill by the same date. To achieve these ambitions, WP published a Design for Sustainability strategy focused on: 

  • Design packaging for recycling: WP has made the recyclability of its packaging central to all of its designs, by consulting with partners through the entire chain, including customers, sorting and recycling companies. Following extensive research, WP has developed the world’s first 100% recyclable valve, that offers fully controlled, clean dispensing. This valve is compatible with a wide range of applications for food, home care and personal care. 
  • Rethink packaging: refillable packaging is a good example of what this approach can deliver. By making it possible to easily and efficiently refill a product’s main packaging, it can go through numerous usage cycles, removing the environmental impacts of production and logistics. 
  • Low-impact materials: WP has developed a wide range of sustainable materials that reduce the use of fossil feedstock and are produced with a lower carbon footprint. These materials meet all product specifications and functionality requirements and are also suitable for food applications. 
  • Eco-efficient production and optimised logistics: WP improves its processes and invests in state-of-the art equipment to optimise production conditions, reducing the greenhouse gas emissions associated with its production processes. The company is also taking steps to minimise the impacts of its inbound and outbound logistics.

Since first investing in 2015, we have supported WP’s investments in R&D and in a number of bolt-on acquisitions which have broadened its product portfolio and geographic reach.

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Private Equity 

Reducing the environmental impact of IT equipment

The manufacture, use and disposal of IT equipment can have a high impact on the environment. A single server requires the equivalent of 660 trees to absorb the CO2 emissions associated with its manufacture and c.50 million tonnes of e-waste are produced globally each year. Reducing the environmental footprint of IT equipment can therefore have a material positive impact.

Headquartered in France, Evernex maintains IT equipment that is critical for customers’ business continuity, with full coverage of all equipment (servers, storage and network) and all OEMs. The business maintains over 220,000 IT systems across the world. Its model is built on finding eco-friendly solutions for its clients so that they can manage their IT infrastructure with the lowest environmental impact.

Evernex works with its clients to:

  • Repair their IT assets, extending their life cycle and thereby eliminating waste and reducing the amount of new equipment manufactured; 
  • Reuse IT assets, giving a life to equipment that has been reconditioned and finding alternative ways to use equipment; and 
  • Recycle used equipment with adequate data erasure capabilities, by reconditioning parts to be used for repairs, or recovering precious resources such as precious metals.

Since first investing in Evernex in 2019, we have funded the company’s further growth and development, notably through the acquisition of Technogroup, the leading third-party IT maintenance player in the DACH region.

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Attero and HERAmbiente


Recovering and reusing energy and raw materials from waste

Waste is a significant issue worldwide, and growing volumes of waste are being generated as global populations, living standards and consumption increase.

Headquartered in the Netherlands, for over 90 years Attero has been active in recovering and reusing energy and raw materials from waste. Attero owns energy from waste plants, sorting and pretreatment facilities, anaerobic digestion facilities, composting facilities and landfill sites. The company processes waste from a diverse mix of domestic municipalities, commercial and industrial customers, as well as a number of UK and Irish exporters. As an important player in the recycling of plastics in Europe, Attero makes a significant contribution to the development to a circular economy for plastics.

HERAmbiente is the largest player in the Italian waste treatment and disposal market, with over 90 waste treatment and disposal plants, and a strong and stable market position in its home region of Emilia Romagna and more broadly in Northern and Central Italy. It recycles materials, generates electricity from the waste that cannot be recycled, and sells biogas from landfills.

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Transition to a lower carbon economy

Improving health and wellbeing

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