Company Announcements


Source: RNS
RNS Number : 7064M
Forward Partners Group PLC
13 January 2023

Forward Partners Group plc

("Forward Partners" or "the Group")


Forward Partners Group plc (LSE: FWD), the London-based investment firm specialising in supporting high growth, early-stage technology businesses, announces the acquisition of portfolio company Patch Gardens Ltd ("Patch"), by Arena Online Ltd ("Arena").


●   Arena acquires 100% of Patch in an all-share deal

● Forward Partners will now join Arena's shareholder register alongside Patch's other early supporters, including Octopus Ventures

●  As at 30 June 2022, the Company's stake in Patch was held at a valuation of £3.0m. The Group's new position in Arena will be assessed at year end, but the acquisition is not expected to result in an uplift in valuation


Patch (, a leading online UK direct-to-consumer plant store was established in 2015 by Freddie Blackett and has attracted over 250,000 customers since launch. In 2022, it was recognised by Good Housekeeping as the best plant delivery service in the UK.


Arena ( is the UK's leading ethical flower business. The company fulfils tens of thousands of deliveries each week of cut flowers, plants and gifts on behalf of some of the best-known UK brands, as well as through its own direct-to-consumer brand.


Forward Partners first invested in Patch in 2015. The Group expects to retain its holding in Arena for the foreseeable future.


Nic Brisbourne, CEO at Forward Partners, commented: "Congratulations to Freddy and the Patch team as they open the next chapter of their growth at Arena. We've worked closely with the Patch team from inception and have been proud to see them build a strong, purposeful brand and a product committed to sustainability and quality.

We're pleased to be joining the newly enlarged Arena group as a shareholder. We see great potential for value creation as these companies come together, particularly in logistics related cost synergies. We consider the group to hold high growth potential and look forward to working together as it evolves."





Forward Partners Group plc

Nic Brisbourne, Chief Executive Officer

via H/Advisors Maitland

Liberum Capital Limited

(Nominated Adviser and Broker)

Neil Patel

Lauren Kettle

Cara Murphy

Tel: +44 20 3100 2222

H/Advisors Maitland

(Financial PR)

Sam Turvey

Alistair de Kare-Silver

Tel: +44 (0) 207 379 5151

About Forward Partners

Founded in 2013, Forward Partners is an established and respected London-based venture capital firm, specialising in supporting high growth, early-stage technology businesses in the UK.

The Group brings together venture capital provider Forward Ventures and highly specialised growth support from Forward Studio. This model supports founders to build stronger businesses faster to provide better outcomes for companies and investors alike.

The Group makes equity investments in early-stage, high-growth UK companies, and from inception to its admission to London's AIM market in July 2021 had made over 60 unique investments and built a portfolio with an Initial Portfolio NAV in excess of £100m. It holds a nine-year track record of making venture capital investments, and targets underlying NAV growth of 20% per annum over the cycle.

The management team brings together highly experienced venture capitalists, entrepreneurs, and expert consultants. Since 2015, Forward Partners has been backed by BlackRock, one of the largest institutional investors in the world. The Group receives over 4,000 start-up funding applications every year.

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