Bolt-on Acquisition by Brandon Hire

Bolt-on Acquisition by Brandon Hire

Rutland Partners, the specialist turnaround and restructuring investor, is pleased to announce that Brandon Hire has acquired Phoenix Surveying Equipment, a leading supplier of construction related electronic surveying and safety equipment. Brandon Hire was acquired by Rutland in September 2010 from Wolseley PLC for £43m.

Phoenix hires, sells and repairs surveying equipment to a wide of range of customers across the UK. Founded in 1980 and acquired by its current management team in 2005, the business has successfully developed into a leading operator in a market characterised by the specialist nature of the products and services provided. Products range from technical survey through safety and detection to personal safety equipment. The business employs 50 staff from five depots across the south of England and Wales with a head office, like Brandon Hire, also located in Bristol.

Brandon Hire is a leading tool and equipment hire business with over 50,000 local trade and smaller business accounts as well as national contracts with larger customers. Customers operate in a range of maintenance, building and service sectors and the business has revenues of over £70m, with nearly one thousand employees across the group.

Phoenix’s focus is a natural fit with Brandon Hire’s core tool and equipment offering, serving similar customers in similar end markets, and provides the opportunity to expand Phoenix from its current footprint centred on five locations across Brandon’s nationwide network of depots.
Commenting on the deal, Nick Morrill, Managing Partner of Rutland, said:

“We are delighted to be able to support Brandon Hire in this exciting acquisition for the business. Notwithstanding the difficult economic backdrop, Brandon has delivered a strong performance in the period since acquisition and Phoenix offers further growth opportunities in a complementary area to Brandon’s current core focus.”
Commenting on the deal, Tim Smith, Managing Director of Brandon Hire, said:

“Phoenix is a great company with a strong reputation. Both Brandon and Phoenix operate in similar markets and the acquisition offers some real advantages for our customers. We are excited by the opportunities this deal brings.”

To date, Rutland has made six investments from Rutland Fund II (£322 million), excluding the Phoenix bolt-on, and is anticipating an active 2012. Recent investments have included GEMS International, a world leading subsea technical analysis and surveying business acquired in March 2011, and Laidlaw Interiors Group, a leading commercial interiors manufacturing and distribution group, acquired in August of the same year.

The transaction was led on behalf of Rutland by David Wardrop and Kajen Mohanadas with support from Nick Morrill.

PricewaterhouseCoopers provided due diligence support and Taylor Wessing acted as legal advisers.


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