DC Advisory brings you an update on UK mid-market activity for Q3 2018.

 

Key highlights from the period include:

  • Q3 2018 has seen a significant increase in the appetite for transactions, with the total number of mid-market buy-out deals in Q3 2018 up 53% compared to Q3 2017. Transaction numbers this quarter have surpassed the impressive levels of Q2 2018, now being the highest observed per quarter since Q2 2010
  • For now, it seems like the uncertainty surrounding the UK’s post-Brexit position has not led to a slowdown in the number and aggregate value of deals announced. However, with only 6 months to go until the 29 March 2019 deadline, buyers are increasingly asking for some protection against a no deal Brexit
  • An increasingly obvious trend is that mid-market private equity firms, such as Bridgepoint, Francisco Partners, Silver Lake and Vista, divest stakes to outside parties in order to support expansion into new markets and products
  • The trend above, combined with high levels of dry powder in private equity, supports the findings that Primary and Secondary buyouts make up nearly 90% of all deals this quarter
  • Trade exits experienced a sharp decline in Q3 2018, falling to almost a quarter of their Q2 2018 level, although this was admittedly an unusually high basis for comparison
  • It is clear that the TMT and Services sectors have had an extraordinary year, with 2018YTD deal numbers surpassing FY2017 levels in both sectors already after Q3 2018
  • In contrast, Leisure, Retail & Consumer, Industrial Products & Services, and Healthcare are all roughly in line with previous years

Q3 total UK mid-market buyout activity

2015 – 2018 total UK mid-market buyout deals by sector

2015 – 2018 total UK mid-market deals by source and exit

Who’s been fundraising?

July

Apiary Capital Partners held a final close of Apiary Capital Fund, at £200m
ECI Partners held a final close of ECI 11, at £700m
Graphite Capital Management held a final close of Graphite Capital Partners IX, at £470m
NorthEdge Capital held a final close of NorthEdge Capital SME Fund I, at £120m
Weinberg Capital Partners held a final close of Weinberg Capital Partners III, at €295m

August

Steadfast Capital held a first close of Steadfast Capital IV, at €248m
Silverfleet Capital held a first close of Silverfleet Capital Small Business Fund I, at €110m

September

Inverleith held a final close of Inverleith I, at £60m
Corpfin Capital held a final close of Corpfin Capital V, at €275m
Mid Europe Partners held a first close of Mid Europe Fund Investments, at $29m
CapVis Equity Partners held a final close of CapVis Equity V, at €1,200m
Five Arrows Principal Investments held a final close of Five Arrows Capital Partners, at $655m

 

See our latest M&A and debt advisory transactions >

Recent transactions by sector

 

Healthcare
Industrial Products & Services
Leisure, Retail & Consumer
Services
TMT

Healthcare

4Ways

ECI acquired 4Ways, the teleradiology reporting company, from Synova, for an undisclosed consideration

AJM Mobility

WestBridge Capital acquired AJM Mobility, the provider of mobility and equipment solutions, for an undisclosed consideration

Aquilant

H2 Equity Partners acquired Aquilant, the distributor of specialist medical, pharmaceutical and scientific products and services, from UDG Healthcare. UDG Healthcare was advised by DC Advisory, read more >

CRF Health

Genstar Capital acquired CRF Health, the provider of eCOA and eConsent solutions for the life sciences industry, from Vitruvian, for an undisclosed consideration

Origin Animal

August Equity’s portfolio company VetPartners acquired Origin Animal, the provider of veterinary services, for a consideration of £55m

Prime Health Diagnostics

Apposite Capital acquired Prime Health Diagnostics, the provider of healthcare, health and fitness services, for an undisclosed consideration

VetPartners

BC Partners acquired VetPartners, the provider of veterinary services, from August Equity and Ares Management, for a consideration of £700m

Industrial Products and Services

Afon Tinplate

Chamonix Private Equity’s portfolio company Tinmasters acquired Afon Tinplate, the tinplate processing company, for an undisclosed consideration

Amazon Filters

BGF acquired a significant stake in Amazon Filters, the filtration equipment manufacturer, for an undisclosed consideration

Apogee

Equistone sold its portfolio company Apogee, the office printing equipment supplier and servicing company, to HP, for £380m

BOFA International

LDC sold its portfolio company BOFA International, the manufacturer of fume extraction and filtration systems, to Donaldson Company, for an estimated consideration of £79m

ByBox

LDC sold its portfolio company ByBox, the company engaged in logistics distribution services, to Francisco Partners, for an undisclosed consideration

Collingwood Lighting

Baird Capital Partners acquired a majority stake in Collingwood Lighting, the manufacturer of LED lighting, for an undisclosed consideration. Baird Capital Partners was advised by DC Advisory, read more >

Cooke Optics

Caledonia Investments acquired Cooke Optics, the manufacturer of premium-end cinematography lenses, from Growth Capital Partners, for an enterprise value of £97m

Elite Electronic Systems

Lonsdale Capital Partners acquired a majority stake in Elite Electronic Systems, the provider of electronic manufacturing services, for an undisclosed consideration

Havelock Europa

RCapital Partners acquired Havelock Europa, the designer and manufacturer of educational, healthcare and laboratory interiors and commercial interiors, for an undisclosed consideration

Knorr-Bremse Rail Services UK

Mutares acquired Knorr-Bremse Rail Services UK, the manufacturer of braking systems and the supplier of addition sub-systems for rail and commercial vehicles, for an undisclosed consideration

Menzies Distribution

Endless acquired Menzies Distribution, the provider of marketing, logistics and delivery solutions, from John Menzies, for £75m

Monks & Crane Industrial Group

Gil Investments acquired Monks & Crane Industrial Group, the manufacturer and supplier of maintenance products, hand and power tools, safety equipment and protective clothing, from Adolf Wurth, for an undisclosed consideration

Nylacast

Equistone acquired Nylacast, the designer and manufacturer of precision-engineered polymer solutions, from Caird Capital, for an undisclosed consideration. Equistone was advised by DC Advisory, read more >

Orbis Protect

NorthEdge Capital acquired Orbis Protect, the provider of cleaning solutions, from Sullivan Street Partners, for a consideration of £14m

Pyroguard

ESO Capital Partners acquired Pyroguard, the manufacturer of fire-rated glazing, from Dunedin and NVM Private Equity, for an undisclosed consideration

Rembrand Timber

Cairngorm Capital Partners acquired Rembrand Timber, the importer, manufacturer and distributor of timber, for an undisclosed consideration

Thornhill Heat Exchangers

RCapital Partners acquired Thornhill Heat Exchangers, the manufacturer and supplier of plate heat exchanger spares, in a management buy-out insolvency transaction, for an undisclosed consideration

UAP

Maven Capital acquired UAP, the supplier and distributor of door and window hardware, for a consideration of £20m

UK Business of CPI Card Group

Sea Equity acquired the UK Business of CPI Card Group, the provider of printing, personalisation and fulfilment services to the commercial, loyalty and gift card markets, for an undisclosed consideration

WPI

Three Hills Capital Partners and CorpAcq acquired WPI, the provider of civil engineering, surfacing, construction and remediation services, for an undisclosed consideration

Leisure, Retail & Consumer

Be At One

Piper Private Equity sold its portfolio company Be At One, the owner and operator of cocktails bars, to Stonegate Pub Company, for a consideration of £50m

Bonhams 1793

Epiris acquired Bonhams 1793, the UK-based auction company, for an undisclosed consideration

Casual Dining Group

Pemberton Capital, along with KKR and Apollo, acquired a significant stake in Casual Dining Group, the owner and operator of a chain of casual dining restaurants, for a consideration of £150m

Cut4Cloth

True Capital acquired a majority stake in Cut4Cloth, the designer, manufacturer and seller of sustainably-sourced organic cotton apparel and accessories, for an undisclosed consideration

Great Rail Journeys

Duke Street acquired Great Rail Journeys, the provider of escorted rail holidays, from ECI Partners, for a consideration of £100m

Iconic London

BlueGem Capital acquired a majority stake in Iconic London, the company engaged in manufacturing and distribution beauty products, for an undisclosed consideration

Ideal Shopping Direct

Aurelius acquired Ideal Shopping Direct, the multi-channel home shopping retailer, from Blackstone, for an undisclosed consideration. Aurelius was advised by DC Advisory, read more >

Martin Audio

LDC acquired Martin Audio, the company manufacturing audio equipment and loudspeakers, from Loud Audio, for an undisclosed consideration

Meadow Foods

Exponent Private Equity acquired a 35% stake in Meadow Foods, the producer and supplier of milk and dairy ingredients, from Paine Schwartz Partners, for an undisclosed consideration

Neilson Active Holidays

LDC acquired Neilson Active Holidays, the holidays and tour operator, from Risk Capital Partners, for an undisclosed consideration. DC Advisory provided M&A and financing advice to LDC, read more >

On The Go Tours

Alcuin acquired On The Go Tours, the global escorted tour operator, for an undisclosed consideration

Primrose

Rockpool Investments acquired Primrose, the online-only garden products retailer, from Business Growth Fund in a management buy-out transaction, for an undisclosed consideration

Produce Investments

Promethean Investments acquired Produce Investments, the company engaged in growing, sourcing, packing, and marketing fresh potatoes, for an estimated consideration of £83m

The Appointment Group

Apiary acquired a majority stake in The Appointment Group, a company engaged in providing travel and event management services, for a consideration of £18m

Services

Benefex

Bain Capital acquired Benefex, the owner of the employee experience platform OneHub, from BGF, for an undisclosed consideration

Canotec

Lyceum Capital Partners acquired Canotec, the company specialising in office printing and document imaging systems, for an undisclosed consideration

Clear Insurance Management (Clear Group)

ECI acquired a stake in Clear Insurance Management (Clear Group), the insurance broker, for an undisclosed consideration

Cognita Schools

KKR and EMK sold its portfolio company Cognita Schools, the owner and operator of private schools, to Jacobs Holding, for an estimated consideration of $2bn

EMR Search & Selection

IPE Capital acquired EMR Search & Selection, the recruitment company, from FiveTen Group, for an undisclosed consideration

Estio Training

Palatine acquired Estio Training, a provider of IT, digital and technology apprenticeships, for an undisclosed consideration

Love Energy

LDC acquired Love Energy, the energy price comparison specialist, from NVM Private Equity, for an estimated consideration of £25m

M Three Corporate Consulting

ECI Partners acquired a 60% stake in M Three Corporate Consulting, the company engaged in providing technology consultancy to global banks and enterprises, for an undisclosed consideration

MeteoGroup

TBG acquired MeteoGroup, the provider of weather forecast services, from General Atlantic, for an undisclosed consideration

Mode Print Solutions

Connection Capital acquired Mode Print Solutions, the provider of managed print services to SMEs, for an estimated consideration of £21m

Nexus Vehicle Management

Phoenix Equity Partners acquired Nexus Vehicle Management, the B2B broker of rental vehicles, from Bowmark Capital, for a consideration of £142m

Parking Eye

Macquarie and MML acquired ParkingEye, the provider of automatic number plate recognition enabled car park management, from Capita, for a consideration of £235m

Protocol

Compass Partners International acquired Protocol and a 20% stake each in Rodenstock and Infinitas Learning Netherlands from Bridgepoint, for an undisclosed consideration

Stagecoach Theatre Arts

Encore Capital sold its portfolio company Stagecoach Theatre Arts, the company providing children’s education through the performing arts, to Trafalgar Entertainment Group, for an undisclosed consideration

Travel & General Insurance Services

Mobeus Equity Partners acquired Travel & General Insurance Services, the provider of financial protection insurance for the travel industry, for an undisclosed consideration

Westleton Drake

HgCapital’s portfolio company CogitalGroup acquired Westleton Drake, the tax advisory firm specialised in assisting Americans living abroad, for an undisclosed consideration

TMT

Arkessa

ECI Partners acquired Arkessa, the Internet-of-Things managed services provider, for an undisclosed consideration

BidX1 Auction

Pollen Street Capital acquired a stake in BidX1 Auction, the digital property company which provides an auction platform, for an undisclosed consideration

Connect Advertising & Marketing

Equistone’s portfolio company Inspired Thinking Group acquired Connect Advertising & Marketing, the tech-driven marketing agency, for an undisclosed consideration

Dennis Publishing

Exponent Private Equity acquired Dennis Publishing, the publisher of ‘The Week’ and other current affairs, auto, and tech magazine titles, for an undisclosed consideration. DC Advisory advised Dennis Publishing.

FC Business Intelligence

LDC acquired FC Business Intelligence, the provider of business intelligence, sponsor conferences and events, for an undisclosed consideration

Genius Sports

Apax Partners acquired Genius Sports, the sports data technology provider, from Three Hills Capital Partners, for an undisclosed consideration

Globe Business Media

Levine Leichtman Capital Partners’ portfolio company Law Business Research acquired Globe Business Media, the provider of business intelligence for the legal and intellectual property markets, for an undisclosed consideration

Healthcircle Advertising

LDC’s portfolio company Fishawack acquired Healthcircle Advertising, the strategic brand communications agency, for an undisclosed consideration

Lissted

Primary Capital Partners’ portfolio company Maru Group acquired Lissted, the social listening software, for an undisclosed consideration

Majenta PLM

Business Growth Fund’s portfolio company Cutting Edge Solutions acquired Majenta PLM, the company engaged in providing Siemens’ PLM software solutions and services, for an undisclosed consideration

Outdoor Plus

Inflexion sold its portfolio company Outdoor Plus, the provider of high-profile, digital advertising sites, to Global Radio UK, for an undisclosed consideration

PCTI Solutions

Vista Equity Partners’ portfolio company Advanced Computer Software Group acquired PCTI Solutions, the electronic document management, workflow and information sharing platform provider, for an undisclosed consideration

Primesight

GMT Communcations sold its portfolio company Primesight, the outdoor advertising company, to Global Radio UK, for an undisclosed consideration

Roadworks Information

Bridgepoint Growth Fund acquired a stake in Roadworks Information, the publisher of roadworks database for England and Wales, for an undisclosed consideration

Solar Communications

Beech Tree Private Equity’s portfolio company Wavenet acquired Solar Communications, the business communications solution provider, for an undisclosed consideration

 

DC Contacts
Financial Sponsor Coverage Contacts

 

Andrew Strudwick
Managing Director
London
T: 020 7856 0968
E: andrew.strudwick@dcadvisory.com
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Richard Pulford
Managing Director
Manchester
T: 0161 362 6800
E: richard.pulford@dcadvisory.com
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Susie Meier
Associate
London
T: 020 7856 0939
E: susie.meier@dcadvisory.com