BDO Development Capital Fund leads €6m investment in the Obelisk Group

25 April 2016

Obelisk logo
Declan O’Neill, CEO Obelisk Group with Sinead Heaney & Andrew Bourg

BDO Development Capital Fund leads €6m investment in the Oblisk Group - Cavan-based telecomms & utilities infrastructure specialist

  • Investment to drive international expansion in power supply infrastructure markets in UK & South African markets 
  • 200 additional jobs to be created over 5 years with support from Department of Jobs through Enterprise Ireland

Dublin – 25 April 2016: The BDO Development Capital Fund today announced a €3million investment in the Cavan-headquartered Obelisk Group, a specialist in service provision to the telecommunications and utilities sectors since 1996. The investment is backed by matching bank funding which together will drive the expansion in the telecommunications and power infrastructure sectors in both the UK and South Africa where the Obelisk Group is already well established.

The project is supported by the Department of Jobs through Enterprise Ireland.

The Obelisk Group was founded in Cavan in 1996 by two local entrepreneurs, Colm Murphy and Padraig Brady, to serve the newly emerging Irish mobile telecommunications market.  Since then it has delivered approximately 40% of the sector’s infrastructure.  The company expanded into power infrastructure in 2008, followed by the UK in 2009 and South Africa in 2010. The Obelisk Group now comprises 250 highly trained and experienced engineers and generates annual revenues in excess of €20 million with export revenues currently accounting for 40% of the Group’s revenues.

The BDO Development Capital Fund provides development and growth capital for established, mid-sized and profitable companies to assist them to achieve and accelerate their export-led growth plans. The combined €6 million investment will enable the Obelisk Group to take advantage of the investment in utilities in all three of the company’s markets as they grow to meet the expansion demands of new communication technology and renewable energy generation.

The Obelisk Group has developed an enviable reputation for quality delivery and is strongly positioned to demonstrate its abilities in each market:


  • Investment in mobile 4G infrastructure upgrade;
  • Rollout of fibre broadband in Ireland;
  • Renewable energy investment and rapid development in Irish electricity transmission infrastructure.



  • 4G and telecommunications sector consolidation (a key growth driver);
  • Rollout of fibre broadband in the UK;
  • Rapid increase in renewable energy and solar farm investment and related electrical transmission infrastructure.


South Africa

  • 4G and telecommunications infrastructure rollout
  • Rapid increase in renewable energy investment.


Announcing the Fund’s investment in the Obelisk Group, Investment Director of The BDO Development Capital Fund, Andrew Bourg, said:

“The Obelisk Group is a great example of the sort of best-in-class Irish companies that Development Capital looks to support. It has grown, profitably over a 20 year period and has built a strong reputation and team in a range of complementary markets. It is now poised for exceptional growth with strong macro-economic conditions and positive investment climates in large markets outside of Ireland.  We are delighted to be backing the Obelisk team and look forward to assisting them to at least double Obelisk in size over the next 5 years.”

Obelisk Group, Chief Executive, Declan O’Neill said:

“We welcome the investment from Development Capital who share our vision to build Obelisk into a world-class engineering business that will become a strong brand in our sectors representing quality and delivery. The global markets for telecommunications and power infrastructure are set for exponential growth and we believe Obelisk has the expertise and experience, coupled with lots of hard work and commitment, to capture a significant part of this growth. We are looking forward to working with Development Capital to show how Irish entrepreneurs can compete and succeed on the world stage.”

The BDO Development Capital Fund forms part of the Government’s Development Capital Scheme, an initiative under the Action Plan for Jobs through which a total of €225million is being made available to mid-sized Irish companies with significant growth potential. As part of this Scheme, €75million in funds from the Department of Jobs through Enterprise Ireland will be matched with €150million of private sector funding for investments in Irish companies through a series of different funds.

Julie Sinnamon, Enterprise Ireland CEO, said:

“In an increasingly digital society, the Obelisk Group is a great example of an Irish company using its telecommunications and renewable energy expertise to meet customer demands and drive exports to international markets. This investment demonstrates how the Development Capital Funds can be used to fund ambitious management teams and help them reach their growth potential.  Obelisk has the reputation and ability to deliver key communications and utilities infrastructures on a global level; I wish them continued success in building market share and supporting the creation of new jobs in Ireland”.


Note for editors: Caption for photograph attached: Pictured at the announcement of €6m investment in the Obelisk Group led by the BDO Development Capital Fund are Declan O'Neill, CEO, Obelisk Group with Sinead Heaney & Andrew Bourg, (both) Investment  Directors, Development Capital

About The Obelisk Group

The Obelisk Group is a privately owned company, established in 1996. Our core activity is the provision of solutions and resources to industry across telecommunications, power transmission and distribution, renewable energy and tower infrastructure.

Through expansion and selectively recruiting key professionals the Obelisk Group has built a specialised workforce capable of managing and delivering all aspects of projects within our target markets.

Obelisk has gained a reputation among our clients for problem solving, achieving deadlines and delivering within budget. Over time we have grown steadily into a modern, proactive, international company embracing new technologies and, with hard work and client focus, have been rewarded with steady increases in new business, a strong balance sheet and a number of internationally recognised accolades.


About the BDO Development Capital Fund & Development Capital Limited

The BDO Development Capital Fund is a €75 million Fund aimed at investing development and growth capital in established, mid-sized and profitable companies to support and accelerate their export growth plans. The Fund is managed by Development Capital, a 100% subsidiary of BDO.

Development Capital has created a unique and unprecedented smart funding model centred on a partnership approach that, in addition to substantial capital, will give the selected companies access to advice and international contacts from a range of large Irish corporate and senior business executives. The corporate partners to the fund include Bank of Ireland, CRH plc, Glanbia plc and Glen Dimplex. The Fund, which will invest in approximately 15 companies in total, invests between €2million and €10million in each investee company for an investment term of five years.

The companies already invested in by the BDO Development Capital Fund since it was launched in 2014 are Version 1 (IT Services - €8m in 2014); Lifes2Good (Health & Beauty - €5m in 2015) and Perigord (Life Sciences Packaging - February 2016).

BDO Smart Funding Model and Advisory Board Led by Investment Directors Sinead Heaney and Andrew Bourg, the team at Development Capital operate a unique ‘Smart Funding Model’ for the BDO Development Capital Fund that combines capital with access to, both corporate and executive experience as well as international contacts. The fund capital sources include Enterprise Ireland, Bank of Ireland, CRH plc, Glanbia plc and Glen Dimplex.

This unique approach combines to create a broad and deep bank of international business experience for investee companies to draw upon. In addition to the Corporate Partners who have committed both funding and expertise to assist investee companies, the investee companies have access to proven industry experts who have created, grown and developed Irish Companies into international success stories comprising: Denis Brosnan (former CEO of Kerry Foods), Alan Crosbie (Former Chairman Irish Examiner and family business expert), Dr. Noel Kelly (former Executive Director of Kentz), Dr Jim Mountjoy (founder of Euristix) and Helen Ryan (former CEO Creganna Tactx Medical). The Development Capital Investment Directors are supported by an Investment Committee chaired by Eoin O’Driscoll (Chairman of SWS).


About Enterprise Ireland

Enterprise Ireland is the Irish Government agency that works with Irish enterprises to help them start, grow, innovate and win export sales on global markets. Enterprise Ireland partners with entrepreneurs, Irish businesses, and the research and investment communities to develop Ireland’s international trade, innovation, leadership and competitiveness.  The ultimate objective is increased exports, employment and prosperity in Ireland.


For BDO Development Capital Fund & The Obelisk Group:

Conor Dempsey
Dempsey Corporate

+353 86 247 9892

+353 1 2121 981

Conor Dempsey

For Enterprise Ireland: 

Press Office
Enterprise Ireland

+353 1 727 2000