Better Capital News

Acquisition and fundraising announcements

  • Sale of Intertain // 7 December 2016

    Better Capital has sold iNTERTAIN Limited to Stonegate Pub Company for an enterprise value of £39.5m.

    Stonegate is one of the UK's largest managed pub companies, with 662 sites nationwide.

    The 2012 Fund acquired the group in November 2014 and has successfully restructured and invested in the business, returning it to being profitable and cash generative.  The deal represents a good exit at a c24% IRR.

    We wish iNTERTAIN’s ongoing team and new shareholders success in the business’s next phase.

  • 2009 Fund in exclusive discussions to sell Gardner // 16 November 2016

    Better Capital PCC today announced that the 2009 Fund has entered into exclusive discussions with Shaanxi Ligeance Mineral Resources Co. Limited ("SLMR") for the sale of its interest in Gardner Aerospace Holdings Limited ("Gardner").

    The purchase price offered by SLMR of £326 million on an Enterprise Value basis reflects the business's continued strong performance.  

    The proposed transaction remains subject to certain legal and other conditions and to regulatory and other approvals and will be presented to Gardner's works council in France imminently, as is required under French law.

    SLMR is a company headquartered in China and listed on the Shenzhen Stock Exchange.  It is the ultimate parent company of a group whose current main activity is mineral exploration and production, but whose interests include a growing aerospace machining and component manufacture division.

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  • Sale of Santia to Alcumus // 2 December 2015

    The 2009 Fund today sold Santia for £47 million to Alcumus Holdings Limited, an investee company of Inflexion Private Equity. 

    It has owned the group since early 2011, when it was acquired from the administrators of Connaught Plc. The investment generated a money multiple of 2.8 times and an internal rate of return of 26%.

    We wish Santia's ongoing team and new shareholders success in the business's next phase. 

     

  • Statement on City Link // 23 March 2015

    Better Capital’s Response to the BIS and Scottish Affairs Committees’ Report on City Link

    First, we acknowledge that many of the more general questions raised in this Report do need addressing. Issues about employee consultation near insolvency and the evolution of different forms of employment particularly need legislative change.

    However, in one significant respect the Report is incorrect.

    The Report states that “From 22nd December [2014], the company took a deliberate decision not to inform employees and contractors as to the true intentions and position of the company, and this was done for the financial benefit of City Link and Better Capital.” This statement is ill-founded.

    It is incorrect to suggest that there was any financial benefit to City Link in continuing to trade between 22nd and 24th December, the date when it ceased trading. The company had effectively failed on either date.

    It is our firm belief that the company took the right decision to trade until 24th December.

    If the company had ceased trading on 22nd December, which no doubt it would have done if its situation had become public knowledge, then some hundreds of thousands of parcels would have been in the system and a substantial proportion of these held by contractors. It is clear that in this scenario a large number of these parcels would never have been delivered, resulting in customers’ unnecessary financial loss and very substantial disappointment for families at Christmas.

    It would also have resulted in massive financial claims against City Link for non-delivery and loss of parcels which, in our estimation, could plausibly have added in excess of £10m to the unsecured creditors of City Link.

    In our view, the company took a deliberate and brave decision to trade for the extra two days which it could only do if it did not announce its likely administration.

    To facilitate this additional trading time Better Capital agreed to allow the security for its debt to run down. The Committees received evidence that some £3.4m of cash was received in those two days and we believe that the unsecured creditors were less at 24th December than they would have been at 22nd December. In addition, employees received pay for those additional days. Better Capital’s loss of security position enabled this to happen.

    Better Capital does not accept that it, as a secured creditor, should have done any more than it did. We explored thoroughly and carefully every avenue to a solvent outcome, but sadly failed to find one. Better Capital could have recovered much more of its investment by precipitating an earlier insolvency, but we did not do so to allow every possible solution to be considered.

    We at Better Capital very much regret the failure of City Link and its consequences for so many.

  • Acquisition of CAV Aerospace // 20 March 2015

    Today, Fund II has committed £40m to CAV Aerospace.

    CAV is a specialist aerospace manufacturing business, which supplies complex metallic components and sub-assemblies to several major original equipment manufacturers including Airbus, Embraer and Gulfstream.  The company operates from seven sites – four in the UK, two in Poland and one in Mexico.

    The audited revenue for the year to 31 December 2013 was £74m, with the business operating close to breakeven.

     

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  • Sale of Calyx Managed Services // 21 February 2015

    Following a competitive auction process involving a number of interested parties, Calyx Managed Services ("CMS") was sold to MXC Capital Limited for an enterprise value of £9.0m. The CMS element of the Calyx Group’s most recent valuation was £4.9m.

    Better Capital wishes the CMS team every success in the future under their new ownership.

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  • Acquisition of iNTERTAIN // 7 November 2014

    Today, Fund II has committed £20m to the iNTERTAIN Group.

    iNTERTAIN was formed in October 2009 to acquire the prime trading assets previously owned and operated by Regent Inns Plc. It now operates a chain of bars across the UK trading principally under the Walkabout brand.

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  • Spicers-OfficeTeam acquires Buro Business Supplies // 24 October 2014

    Just ten weeks after being acquired by Better Capital, OfficeTeam have announced the acquisition of Buro Business Supplies, a £6m business based in Chessington, Surrey.

    OfficeTeam will extend their industry leading distribution service to the Buro customer base, including having OfficeTeam delivery drivers take the goods to the required locations within their offices.

    Jeff Whiteway, CEO of Spicers-OfficeTeam said: “We welcome Buro to the group and look forward to seeing the benefits that our last mile service will offer their customers. Buro have proven ecommerce technology platforms in place and their experienced team will continue to build long and strong end-user relationships under our new ownership.”

    Alan Bonner, CEO of Buro, added: “When we considered the consolidation taking place in the market it became an obvious next step to talk to Spicers-OfficeTeam about joining forces. We’ve been competing with the OfficeTeam service model for many years and now we can take advantage of everything they have to offer us.  We are excited about the opportunity to combine the significant assets, resources and successes of our two companies to set a new standard in the industry.”

    “Buro will enjoy trading within the group,” commented Whiteway further. “We have a history of many successful acquisitions under private equity ownership and Better Capital have been as positive as expected in supporting us fully in our planned development.”

    “Buro’s pragmatic approach made the whole process easy and both companies share a passion for delighting their customers. Over the next few years Buro’s team will have a greater opportunity to do that with a wider range of specialist products and services now being available to them. Buro’s contribution to the group will include further strengthening our ecommerce capabilities.”

    For more information please contact:

    Jeff Whiteway, CEO, Spicers-OfficeTeam Group on 020 8774 3430 or Jeff.Whiteway@spicersofficeteam.co.uk

    Andy Skinner, Director, Better Capital LLP on 020 7440 0864 or Andy@bettercapital.co.uk

  • Acquisition of OfficeTeam // 24 July 2014

    Fund II has today committed £90 million to make its fourth acquisition.

    OfficeTeam, a leading supplier of office products and services, was acquired from a syndicate of lenders that took control of the group last year.

    The fund has backed the existing management team to take the group to its next stage of growth.

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  • Better Capital wins ‘Business Rescue Financier of the Year’ // 3 October 2013

    At the 2013 Insolvency & Rescue Awards held on 3 October, Better Capital won the category for ‘Business Rescue Financier of the Year’.

    Mark Aldridge commented, “We are delighted to receive this award and to be recognised by our peers for the work we do to revive distressed businesses. 

    Better Capital will only acquire a business with a view to rescuing it and will always invest heavily into its turnaround and future growth.”

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  • Better Capital completes its fourth fundraising // 21 August 2013

    Better Capital’s 2012 Cell has recently raised an additional £186 million from new and existing investors. Net proceeds of £182 million were deployed into Better Capital’s Fund II. This increases Fund II's total capital under management to £350 million, of which over £230 million remains as "dry powder" to be invested in UK, Irish and European turnaround opportunities. The period in which these funds can be invested has been extended to June 2016.

    In aggregate, the Better Capital  Funds have raised over £0.6 billion and, as ever, remain hungry for new deal opportunities.

  • DigiPoS and Clarity rebranded // 1 November 2012

    Following the successful merger of DigiPoS and Clarity Commerce, the combined group has now been rebranded Omnico Group.

    It is a global, financially sound organisation with over $100 million in revenue and nearly 400 staff focused on providing omni-channel commerce solutions to its customers in retail, entertainment, hospitality and leisure sectors.

    The merger will drive better customer engagement through its hardware, software and services so that customers can benefit from enhanced loyalty, growth, productivity and profitability.

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  • Acquisition of Jaeger // 16 April 2012

    The 2012 Fund has completed its second acquisition, that of Jaeger Group.

    Jaeger is a UK-based high-end fashion brand and retailer of womenswear and menswear operating from a number of stores, concessions and outlets in the UK and overseas.

    Jaeger's audited revenues and operating profit for the year to 28 February 2011 were £94 million and £1 million respectively. At that date the group's net assets were £11 million.

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  • Acquisition of Everest // 28 March 2012

    BECAP12 Fund LP (“Fund II”) has completed its first acquisition, that of Everest Limited (“Everest”) and its subsidiary companies by a special purpose vehicle ultimately owned by Fund II.

    Everest is a leading consumer brand in the manufacture, installation and supply of PVCu and aluminium windows and doors, conservatories, roofline products, garage doors, security systems, kitchens, driveways and other home improvement products.

    Everest Limited revenues for the year to 31 October 2010 were £173 million.

    Fund II has committed £25 million to finance the acquisition and to fund the working capital and restructuring requirements.

    Nick Sanders and Peter Williamson will join the board of Everest.

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  • Acquisition of Spicers UK & Ireland // 29 December 2011

    The Fund completed the acquisition of the UK and Irish business of Spicers - a leading office products and stationery wholesaler.

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  • Better Capital Fund II // 19 December 2011

    Better Capital Limited ("the Company") today announces its intention to raise further capital through an issue of new 2012 Shares for investment in a new fund, Better Capital Fund II, to invest principally in UK and Irish turnaround opportunities.

    £158 million has been raised under Firm Placing, with up to a further £42 million being made available to existing shareholders under the Offer and conditionally under the Placing.

     

     

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  • Half Yearly Report and Fundraising // 12 October 2011

    Better Capital Limited (the 'Company') announces its interim financial results for the 6 month period ended 30 September 2011.

    Richard Crowder, Chairman stated:

    "The Company and the Better Capital Fund have enjoyed their most active six month period since inception.  In the period to 30 September 2011, the Better Capital Fund deployed over £110 million into a number of investment opportunities.  Some of these are platform acquisitions and some are follow-on investments. 

    After due and careful consideration the Board has decided to pursue a further fundraising in the coming months by way of a new segregated class of shares, deployed in a second Better Capital fund."

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  • Acquisition of DigiPoS Store Solutions // 22 July 2011

    The Fund completed the acquisition of the issued share capital of DigiPoS Store Solutions Holdings Limited, which in turn owns and controls the wider DigiPoS trading group.

    The investment follows the acquisition of the bank facilities of DigiPoS Store Solutions Group Limited and its subsidiaries.

  • Conditional commitment to acquire Spicers // 5 July 2011

    Better Capital Limited is pleased to announce that on 5 July 2011 BECAP Fund LP (the "Fund") entered into an agreement to acquire the UK and Irish business of Spicers, a pan-European supplier of stationery and office products, which is currently a subsidiary of DS Smith Plc, from Unipapel SA. The agreement is conditional upon the proposed disposal of Spicers by DS Smith Plc to Unipapel SA being completed.

    The Fund has committed £40 million to a wholly owned special purpose vehicle set up to effect the transaction.

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  • Acquisition of DigiPoS Store Solutions debt instruments // 4 July 2011

    On 4 July 2011 the Fund acquired certain bank facilities and related rights of DigiPoS Store Solutions Group Limited and its subsidiaries. 

    The group supplies electronic point of sale hardware and software and provides related installation services.  It is headquartered in the UK but has subsidiaries serving local markets throughout the world.  

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  • Calyx Software makes two bolt-on acquisitions // 3 June 2011

    On 3 June, 2011 Calyx Software Limited made two bolt-on acquisitions, creating the UK’s largest Microsoft Dynamics GP reseller with more than 500 customers.

    The first acquisition comprised certain assets and obligations of a division of Touchstone Group Plc. (http://www.touchstone.co.uk/) This division of Touchstone is a leading supplier of integrated business software products to mid-sized UK organisations. The division had unaudited turnover for the financial year ending 31 March 2011 of £3.2m.

    The second acquisition comprised the entire issued share capital of Trinity Computer Services Holdings Limited. (http://www.trinitycomputers.co.uk/) Trinity is a specialist developer of wholesale and distribution application software products, utilising Microsoft Dynamics GP as the core finance system, for mid-sized UK organisations. Trinity’s audited turnover for the financial year ending 30 September 2010 was £2.9m.

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  • Acquisition of Santia Group of Companies (wholly owned subsidiaries of Connaught Plc), leading provider of health and safety risk management services in the UK // 1 February 2011

    On 1 February 2011 BECAP Fund LP acquired certain trade and assets of the Santia group of companies (wholly owned subsidiaries of Connaught plc, in Administration) and related subsidiaries. The Group is a leading provider of health and safety risk management services, including; health and safety consultancy, training services, occupational health, asbestos management, food safety, information services and supplier and vendor accreditation. The Group will continue to serve both private and public sector organisations.

    The Fund committed £15.0 million to finance the acquisition and to fund the restructuring and working capital requirements.

    Sean Cooper, a member of Better Capital LLP will join the boards of the acquisition vehicles.

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  • Gardner Group acquires Blade // 20 January 2011

    On 20th January 2011 Gardner Group acquired the trade and certain assets of Blade Tooling Ltd and Blade Technology Ltd (in administration)

    Blade is a Worcestershire based organisation that specialises in the manufacture and supply of complex aerofoil tooling, ceramic cores and wax mouldings to the aerospace and industrial gas turbine markets. Blade has considerable technical capability, adds significant value to its customers, and has ambitious plans to grow and develop its business.

    Blade is a strategically adjacent diversification for Gardner. The Directors of Gardner believe that the acquisition of Blade will strengthen a number of Gardner's key commercial relationships, and that the exploitation of Gardner's existing infrastructure, systems and network will significantly improve the performance of Blade.The transaction confirms Gardner’s role in the continued consolidation of the aerospace manufacturing sector in which it operates.

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  • Acquisition of Calyx; a leading provider of ICT services in the UK and Ireland // 10 September 2010

    On 10 September 2010 BECAP Fund LP financed the acquisition of the trade and assets of certain subsidiaries of Calyx, a leading provider of Managed ICT Services in the UK and Ireland. The Group’s principal divisions offer IT outsourcing, telecommunication carrier services and software solutions.

    The Fund committed £17 million to finance the debt acquisition, the purchase of the business and assets and to fund the restructuring and working capital requirements.

    The UK businesses were acquired from the Joint Administrators, being Geoffrey Rowley and Phillip Armstrong of FRP Advisory LLP.  The Irish business was acquired from the Receiver, Tom Kavanagh of KavanaghFennell.

    Nick Sanders and Sean Cooper of Better Capital LLP will join the boards of the acquisition vehicles.


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  • Gardner Group makes a bolt-on acquisition // 7 May 2010

    On 7 May 2010 the group made a strategic, bolt-on acquisition comprising of certain assets and obligations of RD Precision Limited (In Administration), a manufacturer and supplier of precision tools and parts for the some of Gardner's key customers. The acquired business now trades as Gardner Aerospace - Broughton Limited.


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  • Better Capital launch party and office move // 3 March 2010

    Better Capital hosted a memorable launch party just three days after moving to their new offices on the Charing Cross Road.

    The event was spectacularly well supported with in excess of 450 people from across the business community in attendance.

    The invitees were teased on the invite with what was to be an unusual display on the night. What they were greeted with was a dazzling display across a neon sign at the world famous Piccadilly advertising lights - a first for the Private Equity community! A national debt ticker with the word “Debtmageddon” stunned onlookers while a number of sadly relevant quotes scrolled across the vast screen.

    The team would like to thank kindly everyone who made the effort to attend.


  • Acquisition of Gardner Group; one of Europe's leading suppliers of aerospace components // 3 February 2010

    On 3 February 2010 BECAP Fund LP financed the acquisition of Gardner Group Limited and its associated entities ("Gardner Group"). The Fund committed £22.5 million to finance the debt acquisition, the purchase of the business and assets and to fund the restructuring and working capital requirements.

    Gardner is the UK's largest independently owned supplier of metallic aerospace details and sub-assemblies, and is one of the largest in Europe. Gardner is headquartered in Ilkeston, Derbyshire, UK and has seven manufacturing sites in the UK and two in Poland. Gardner's customers include Airbus, Rolls-Royce, GKN, BAE Systems and other major international companies in the aviation sector. Gardner also provides aerospace component repair services; fast turnaround 'late definition' services; and manufactures transmission components for truck gearboxes.

    A spokesperson for Gardner, commented, "We are delighted to have secured Better Capital's investment in Gardner, which provides us with a solid financial base to exploit future opportunities and deliver our growth plans. Gardner's performance, reputation, technical skills and low cost production capabilities are now delivering enhanced and sustainable benefits to Gardner's strategic customers. Better Capital's investment in Gardner ensures the continued delivery of this offering."


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