A private equity firm has launched a data analytics and artificial intelligence platform to help identify new investment and buy-and-build opportunities.

NorthEdge Capital, based in Birmingham, Leeds and headquartered in Manchester, manages over £650m of private equity funds aimed at the North of England and Midlands regions targeting buy-out and development capital transactions.

The initiative is in partnership with Manchester-based AI developers Peak.

Founded in 2014, Peak has expanded rapidly and currently has a team of 57 people in offices in Manchester, Jaipur, London, Brisbane and Edinburgh.

Peak’s algorithms, machine learning and deep learning technologies will assist the NorthEdge investment process as the firm continues to seek growth and development capital, management buyouts, equity release and buy-and-build opportunities across the North of England and Midlands regions.

“There are so many facts to validate that AI-powered businesses are excelling away from the pack, and the use of AI for deal origination at NorthEdge is an extremely exciting example of that," said Richard Potter, co-founder and CEO of Peak.

“The results we have seen to-date have the potential to transform the private equity industry as we know it and we’re looking forward to watching this develop in the coming months.”

NorthEdge has been one of the most prolific private equity investors in the North of England in recent years and has had a busy 2018, investing £75m to date as well as raising its £120m fund to invest alongside its main Fund of £315m.

“We are constantly seeking new methods of building on our entrepreneurial approach to drive value,” said Ray Stenton, Partner and Head of New Business at NorthEdge Capital.

“Machine learning is set to revolutionise deal origination at NorthEdge, and by working collaboratively with Peak we are building a stronger picture of our market size, demographics and the key drivers for investment opportunities.

“Artificial intelligence will help to automate and drive efficiency for our Origination Team to find outstanding teams who want to engage with an entrepreneurial, and importantly, local private equity firm, to unlock real value for all stakeholders.

“With more data, we can make better decisions which means a better outcome both for NorthEdge and our investors.”