The Arowana investment process is time-tested, collaborative and decisive. Since inception not only have we delivered outstanding returns but importantly have not realised any investment losses in our various companies or investment funds. We believe our genuinely entrepreneurial culture and never-say-die attitude have been the primary drivers contributing to this result.
Being industry agnostic, we are continuously expanding our reach across: solar energy, education, enterprise software, infrastructure services, industrial testing and asset management to name a recent few. Along the way, the team have bought, built, operated, scaled up and sold businesses creating thousands of jobs and considerable economic value. We’ve also gained a priceless set of experiences that form the foundation upon which Arowana has established its reputation.
Under Arowana’s watch and management, many SME’s have flourished. Here is a look at some of our key successes:
Nationwide thermal imaging service group, Thermoscan was acquired from its terminally ill founder in 2010. Under Arowana’s watch the business was transformed from a 30 year old paper-based business into an efficient interactive database-driven business enabling the group to scale and improve the customer experience as well as productivity. In 2019, Thermoscan was acquired from Arowana for a 3.8x multiple on invested capital.
Global solar power provider VivoPower International PLC was started by Arowana in August 2014 with an initial focus on Australia and Southeast Asia. Challenging market circumstances necessitated Arowana to re-strategise and pivot VivoPower’s focus towards the United States. In less than 3 years, VivoPower scaled up to become a profitable global company generating US$18.9m of EBITDA and achieving a listing on NASDAQ in December 2016. It has since built up a 1.8GW portfolio of solar projects in the United States making it one of the largest 3 solar developers in the United States. Arowana maintains a majority shareholding in VivoPower and continues to work closely with its leadership team to overcome growing pains and to scale up.
Vocational education group Intueri Education was established by Arowana in June 2010 and initially comprised one college in Christchurch, New Zealand. Within 6 months of acquiring this college, 2 devastating earthquakes condemned the campus building and rendered the business practically inoperable. Where most would have given up, the Arowana team parachuted into Christchurch and rebuilt the business literally from the ground up. In the following 4 years, Arowana orchestrated a buy-and-build programme that saw Intueri’s profits increase 20-fold culminating in a May 2014 IPO delivering a 7x return to Arowana.
Human resources, events and media publishing company HRM Asia was bought by Arowana in July 2008. Subsequently it became the largest business of its kind in Southeast Asia, growing in value by 20% per year on average. In October 2014 it was sold to Diversified Communications a global events company, delivering a 2.5x return to Arowana.