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2019 Company Mergers And Acquisitions: July to December

List of company mergers and acquisitions which took place in the UK between July and December 2019.

December 2019

ISG Technology bought by Allvotec

Fri, 20/12/2019 Allvotec has strengthened its networking and physical infrastructure offering with the acquisition of ISG Technology. Earlier in 2019 the Daisy group spun off its Daisy Partner Services business from the rest of the group and rebranded it as Allvotec.

Bertelsmann takes 100% ownership of Penguin Random House

Fri, 20/12/2019 Pearson has sold its remaining stake in Penguin Random House to Bertelsmann for £530m, in a deal which sees Bertelsmann take full ownership of the publisher.

Sayers the Bakers saved from administration

Fri, 20/12/2019 Sayers the Bakers has been rescued from administration by Karen Wood, who has formed a new company which is to be run by the existing management team.

Bowler acquisition confirmed as Jaguar Land Rover strengthens special vehicle operations 

Fri, 20/12/2019 Bowler, a manufacturer of all-terrain performance cars, parts and rally raid vehicles, has been taken over by Jaguar Land Rover (JLR). The deal will see Bowler integrated into JLR’s special vehicle operations division.

Moorfield Nanotechnology bought by Quorum Technologies for £2.3m

Fri, 20/12/2019 Quorum Technologies, a wholly owned subsidiary of Judges Scientific, has acquired Moorfield Nanotechnology for £2.3m.

Schneider Electric sells specialist division to NG Bailey

Fri, 20/12/2019 NG Bailey has bought Schneider Electric’s substation engineering services division.

Compu b buys Stormfront Retail to create UK's largest independent Apple reseller

Fri, 20/12/2019 The UK’s largest independent Apple reseller and service provider has been created following the announcement that Stormfront Retail has been acquired by Compu b.

Dnata takes 100% control of Alpha LSG

Fri, 20/12/2019 Dnata is to purchase the remaining 50% of Alpha LSG from the LSG Group. Alpha LSG is an inflight catering company which was established by Dnata and LSG Group in 2012.

Jardine Motor Group sells portfolio of Volkswagen and Skoda franchises to Marshall Motor Group

Fri, 20/12/2019 Jardine Motor Group has sold a portfolio of Volkswagen and Skoda passenger and commercial vehicle franchises to Marshall Motor Group for £22.3m.

Cranswick increases UK pig processing capability with Packington Pork purchase

Fri, 20/12/2019 Pig farming business Packington Pork has been bought by Cranswick. The deal increases the proportion of UK pigs processed by Cranswick to 25%.

Mayfair backs Parcel2Go MBO

Fri, 20/12/2019 Mayfair Equity Partners has backed the management buyout of Parcel2Go, in a deal which sees the existing management team remain in place. The investment is to be used to fund domestic and international growth, product development, marketing and selective mergers and acquisitions.

£3.2bn deal sees ReAssure acquired by Phoenix Group

Fri, 20/12/2019 Phoenix Group has agreed a £3.2bn deal to buy ReAssure. The acquisition further establishes Phoenix’s position as Europe's largest life and pensions consolidator.

Leadership development specialist T-three bought by Gateley

Fri, 20/12/2019 The legal and professional services group Gateley has created one of the largest human capital consultancy businesses in the UK with the acquisition of T-three Group for £3.4m. T-three specialises in leadership development, behavioural change programmes and people and management development programmes.

Focusrite expands into new markets with Martin Audio acquisition

Fri, 20/12/2019 The premium professional sound system manufacturer Martin Audio has been acquired by Focusrite. The £39.2m deal is part of Focusrite’s strategy of growing its customer base and expanding into new markets. Established in 1971, Martin Audio is well known within the music industry and operates in the concert touring/production, portable sound systems and installations sectors.

Wakefield City Council proposes to buy Findel Education for £50m

Wed, 18/12/2019 Studio Retail Group has agreed to sell Findel Education to Wakefield City Council for £50m. The deal allows Studio to focus on its ecommerce business. “We believe this transaction is in the best interests of all Studio stakeholders, allowing us to focus on driving further growth within our core Studio value retail business” says Phil Maudsley, CEO of Studio Retail Group. Findel Education supplies resources and equipment to schools in the UK and overseas. Its revenue has decreased by a third over the last eight years due to increased competition in the sector, and in response it has moved away from traditional catalogue-led marketing towards an online approach. Wakefield City Council, via the Yorkshire Purchasing Authority, supplies products and services to a wide range of customers including schools, local authorities, charities, and businesses such as nurseries and care homes.

Air Partner buys Redline for £10m

Wed, 18/12/2019 Redline, a security and training company which specialises in the aviation industry, has been acquired by Air Partner. The £10m deal strengthens Air Partner’s consulting & training division, which is to be renamed Air Partner Safety & Security.

Cineworld buys Canadian cinema operator for £1.6bn

Tue, 17/12/2019 Cineworld, the world’s second largest cinema chain, has bought Canada’s largest cinema operator, Cineplex. The £1.6bn deal adds 165 cinemas and 1,695 screens to Cineworld’s portfolio. The investment underlines Cineworld’s belief that the cinema industry will retain its attractiveness and long-term popularity in the face of competition from streaming services such as Netflix.

The Book People in administration

Tue, 17/12/2019 The online bookseller The Book People has gone into administration. The 31-year-old Surrey-based firm employs around 400 people and has annual sales of £50m. The company continues to trade while the administrators look for a buyer for the business.

Charlton Athletic bought by investment firm

Wed, 04/12/2019 Belgian businessman Roland Duchatelet has sold EFL Championship club Charlton Athletic to East Street Investments.

New owner for the i newspaper as Daily Mail expands portfolio

Wed, 04/12/2019 JPI Media has sold the i newspaper to dmg media for £49.6m. The Daily Mail & General Trust CEO Paul Zwillenberg has said the i will retain editorial independence.

Marlowe buys Aquatreat

Wed, 04/12/2019 The regulatory and compliance services provider Marlowe has acquired the chemicals supplier Aquatreat.

Codemasters buys racing game developer Slightly Mad Studios for £152m

Wed, 04/12/2019 Video game developer Slightly Mad Studios has been bought by Codemasters in a deal worth up to £152.2m. Slightly Mad, best known for the Project Cars video games, is currently working on a racing game based on a Hollywood blockbuster movie franchise. The deal strengthens Codemasters position as one of the leading developers of racing games in the industry.

November 2019

Johnson abandons plans to cut corporation tax

Tue, 19/11/2019 Boris Johnson has announced that the Government has abandoned plans to cut the rate of corporation tax in April 2020. The rate will remain at 19% if the Conservatives win next month’s General Election. In 2016 the then Chancellor, George Osborne, pledged that the rate of corporation tax would be cut to 17% by 2020.

October 2019

Synetiq buys Motorman

Fri, 25/10/2019 Salvage and recycling company Synetiq, which was formed through a four-way merger earlier this year, has acquired Motorman, a remanufacturer and supplier of engines, transmissions and drive train products. The deal strengthens Synetiq’s proposition as an innovative provider of solutions to the parts, salvage and fleet market.

WH Smith agrees $400m deal for Marshall Retail

Fri, 25/10/2019 WH Smith has agreed to buy Marshall Retail for $400m. The takeover will double the iconic British retailer’s presence in the international travel sector, and strengthen its status in the $3bn US Airport market. While WH Smith continues to struggle on the high street, its travel division delivered a 22% rise in sales last year.

Accenture acquires innovation specialist Happen

Fri, 25/10/2019 Professional services giant Accenture has acquired UK consultancy Happen for an undisclosed fee. Happen specialises in advisory work relating to innovation and idea generation. Accenture has made several acquisitions in this area in recent years, with a deal for UK firm ?What if! in March. Happen is headquartered in London with additional offices in Amsterdam and New Jersey. Its offering covers strategy, design, ideation, insight and research.

Sophos accepts £3.1bn offer from Thoma Bravo

Fri, 25/10/2019 Sophos, a global leader in cloud-enabled cybersecurity, has accepted a $3.9bn (£3.1bn) offer from private equity firm Thoma Bravo. The news has seen Sophos shares jump 37% in line with the bid's terms. A FTSE 250 firm based in Abingdon, Sophos was instrumental in assisting the NHS and other businesses affected by the WannaCry ransomware attack in 2017. It floated at a value of £1bn in 2015, one of largest technology IPOs in the UK that year.

Social Chain and Lumaland announce unconventional merger

Fri, 25/10/2019 Manchester-based social media agency Social Chain has completed a merger with German beanbag retailer Lumaland to create a unified advertising firm. The unconventional move creates a group with a combined value of €186m (£161m). Social Chain will be expected to continue to grow its external brand revenue.

TPG offloads Victoria Plum

Fri, 25/10/2019 Hull-based online bathroom retailer Victoria Plum has been bought by Endless, after its owners TPG called time on its unsuccessful investment. TPG spent £200m on the business, then known as Victoria Plumb, in 2014, but struggled to turn a profit since. Its most recent accounts show it broke even on sales of £63m in the year to February 2018. Details of the deal have not been disclosed, however Endless’s Fund IV stipulates that it can pay no more than £80m in a single transaction.

Ebury announces deal for Frontierpay

Fri, 25/10/2019 Fintech firm Ebury has announced an acquisition of Frontierpay, an international payroll payments provider with offices in the UK and Singapore. Founded in 2009, Frontierpay delivers payroll payments across 180 countries. The deal will expand Ebury’s capabilities in technologies that automate international payments for SMEs. Ebury employs c. 1,000 staff across 25 offices in 20 countries, and serving c. 40,000 businesses.

Bonmarché latest retailer to go into administration

Fri, 25/10/2019 Bonmarché has fallen into administration, putting some 2,900 jobs at risk. The announcement comes with news from the British Retail Consortium that 85,000 UK jobs have been cut in the sector in the past year. Bonmarché was bought by Philip Day, the owner of Edinburgh Woollen Mill Group, earlier this year, after issuing a third consecutive profit warning in March. Upon completion, Day announced plans to delist from the London Stock Exchange and conduct viability assessments at the company’s underperforming stores. Bonmarché has 318 shops at the time of writing

UK's biggest payday lender to shut up shop

Fri, 25/10/2019 QuickQuid UK, the UK’s largest payday lender, is to close, with thousands of complaints about its lending unresolved. The firm’s US owner Enova has stated that it will leave the UK market “due to regulatory uncertainty.” It follows in the footsteps of Wonga, which closed in August 2018, and The Money Shop, which went under earlier this year. Casheuronet UK, QuickQuid’s owner, had net income of £12.3m on revenue of £83.3m in the year to November 2017.

Shell Energy to buy challenger brand Green Star

Fri, 25/10/2019 Challenger brand Green Star Energy has been scooped up by Shell Energy, pending regulatory approval. Its 200,000 customers will continue to use 100% renewable energy.

Sportradar seals deal for Optima

Fri, 25/10/2019 Sportradar, a global leading provider of sports data and content, has announced a deal for sports betting and gaming omnichannel platform business Optima. The deal expands Sportradar's betting services portfolio so it becomes a full service B2B data, betting, trading and player management platform business. As a key element of its growth strategy, Sportradar will offer the entire betting and gaming value chain in both established and emerging markets as they regulate.

Inchcape sells fleet solutions business to Toyota

Fri, 25/10/2019 Automotive retailer Inchcape has sold its fleet solutions business to Toyota for £100m. Based in Solihull, Inchcape sells brands such as Jaguar Land Rover, Audio, BMW, Mercedes and Porsche. This deal follows a recent spate of disposals of its less productive dealerships, and retail-only deals in Australia and China. Inchcape Fleet Solutions will join Toyota Fleet Mobility.

Signature Fabrics acquires Milano International

Fri, 25/10/2019 CEPS has announced that its subsidiary company, Signature Fabrics, has acquired 90% of the issued share capital of newly incorporated Milano International Holdings. The Altrincham fabrics firm has bought the sports clothing business for £1.8m.

Apple acquires motion capture specialist iKinema

Fri, 25/10/2019 Apple has announced a deal for UK visual effects business iKinema. With 20 employees as of last year, iKinema develops motion capture technology that has been used by the likes of Disney, Fox and Tencent. Apple will use the tech to augment its AR offerings, such as Animoji and Memoji.

CMS Distribution strengthens in Europe

Fri, 18/10/2019 CMS Distribution has acquired Avesta, a specialist distributor of hardware technologies based on the outskirts of Paris. Focused on the French market for mobile solutions and high-tech products, it employs 32 people. The deal strengthen's CMS's position as one of Europe's leading IT specialist value-added distributors.

Mulberry Waste acquires Mercury Recycling

Fri, 18/10/2019 Mulberry Waste Holdings, a Lancashire-based hazardous waste specialist, has bought Mercury Recycling. Mercury's expertise is in recycling hazardous waste products that contain mercury, such as batteries, fluorescent light tubes and gas meters. It has turnover of £2.5m and 34 staff, and will continue to operate from its base in Trafford Park.

Sills & Betteridge merges with Bridge Sanderson Munro

Fri, 18/10/2019 Sills & Betteridge has merged with legal practice Bridge Sanderson Munro as it looks to make inroads into South Yorkshire. The deal means Sills & Betteridge now has 14 offices across Lincolnshire, South Yorkshire and the East Midlands.

ANS Group acquires long-term partner Alithya UK

Fri, 18/10/2019 Manchester-based cloud and managed services provider ANS Group has acquired Alithya UK from its Canadian parent company. The two companies have worked together for a number of years, with Alithya specialising in Microsoft Dynamics.

Severfield agrees £25m deal for Harry Peers & Co

Fri, 18/10/2019 North Yorkshire structural steel specialist Severfield has agreed to buy Harry Peers & Co for up to £25m. Based in Thirsk, Severfield will pay an initial £18m for the firm, with an additional consideration of £7m payable on condition of meeting certain performance targets. Severfield's previous projects include The Shard, the Olympic Stadium and the Tate Modern.

15 jobs saved at Success Flow Digital

Fri, 18/10/2019 Leeds agency Success Flow Digital has been saved from administration by Dutch group YouWe, saving 15 jobs. Success Flow was established eight years ago as a martech consultancy. YouWe is a full service digital agency based in the Netherlands which offers services including data and intelligence, design, e-commerce and staffing.

Naked Wines offloads Lay & Wheeler for £11.3m

Fri, 18/10/2019 Following from recent news of Majestic Wine's plans to streamline its business to focus on Naked Wines, it has been announced that Naked has sold fine wine merchant Lay & Wheeler for £11.3m. Founded in Colchester in 1854, Lay & Wheeler is one of the country's oldest wine merchants. It was bought for £6m by Naked Wines in 2009, and will now change hands to Coterie. Its warehouse and storage subsidiary Vinotheque is also included in the deal.

L&Q acquires Trafford Housing Trust

Fri, 18/10/2019 L&Q, one of the UK's largest housing associations and developers, has completed the acquisition of Trafford Housing Trust (THT). The deal creates a £1bn+ turnover group with more than 110,000 properties nationwide and £4bn lined up in investment to create 20,000 new homes in the North West.

Housing Plus agrees merger with Stafford and Rural Homes

Fri, 18/10/2019 Stafford and Rural Homes and Housing Plus Group have agreed to merge. The combined group, which will operate under the Housing Plus brand, will own and manage around 18,000 homes and provide employment, training and apprenticeships for 800 local people. The group will include landlords Severnside Housing, South Staffordshire Housing Association and Stafford and Rural Homes. With the deal, it is promising 2,000 new homes and 100 apprenticeship places.

Jerroms and Blue Sky Corporate Finance to merge

Fri, 18/10/2019 West Midlands financial services firms Jerroms and Blue Sky Corporate Finance have agreed to merge. Based in Solihull, Jerroms is an accountants and business adviser while Birmingham and Bromsgrove-based Blue Sky provides corporate finance, due diligence, accountancy and consultancy services to small and medium sized businesses.

Grafton Group offloads Plumbase

Fri, 18/10/2019 Grafton Group has sold Plumbase to Plumbing and Heating Investments for £66.8m. With 163 branches across the UK, Plumbase generated sales of £257.8m and operating profit of £6m in 2018. Grafton states that the deal will allow it to concentrate resources on business that generates “appropriate returns for shareholders”.

Secret Escapes swoops on LateRooms assets

Fri, 18/10/2019 The assets of Malvern, the parent company of LateRooms, has been picked up from administration by luxury hotel and holiday discount e-tailer Secret Escapes. The deal includes LateRooms’ intellectual property rights, business information and social media accounts.

HMV to launch Europe's biggest entertainment store

Fri, 11/10/2019 HMV has announced that it is to open Europe’s biggest entertainment store at Birmingham's Bullring. Called HMV Vault, it will stock 80,000 CDs and 25,000 records and host bands, DJs and screenings in a basement function room. HMV was saved from administration by Canadian businessman Doug Putman in February. Under his ownership, HMV has since reopened 14 of the 28 stores that closed and Putman has pledged to invest at least £10m into reviving the chain, saying he wants to make his shops part of local communities, work with charities and, pointedly, “pay our tax”. The downsizing of HMV’s business has appeared to be Amazon’s direct gain, with its market share climbing proportionately so that it now accounts for £1 in every £4 spent on physical entertainment products. Overall UK sales of physical media shrank by nearly 13% in the year to 25 August 2019, according to Kantar

Kerry Hill acquires Noberne Doors

Fri, 11/10/2019 The private equity buyer Kerry Hill has acquired door manufacturer Noberne Doors. Established in 1975, Noberne specialises in manufacturing security, fire, acoustic, x-ray and external doors.

MBO completed at World Recruitment Solutions

Fri, 11/10/2019 Michael McNeill and his team have led a management buyout of World Recruitment Solutions for an undisclosed sum. The business will rebrand as We Build Recruitment (WBR) and push to grow its contractor numbers to more than 400. The firm is a specialist recruitment agency providing both blue-collar and white-collar contractors to the construction market on temporary and permanent placements. It is a top five construction recruitment company in the North West by contractor numbers.

Franchise Brands strengthens Metro Rod with £12.5m acquisition

Fri, 11/10/2019 Franchise Brands has moved to strengthen its Metro Rod business with the acquisition of WPL Group. The deal, worth up to £12.5m, includes WPL-owned firms Willow Pumps and Willow Drainage. Metro Rod specialises in drain clearance and repair.

Tesco buys Best Food Logistics

Fri, 11/10/2019 Tesco has bought the assets and operations of Best Food Logistics for a nominal fee. The deal is designed to build on the successful merger with Booker that took place in 2018. Best Food distributes food to customers including Pret a Manger, KFC and Burger King.

2,500 jobs saved as Hays Travel buys 555 Thomas Cook shops

Thu, 10/10/2019 Up to 2,500 jobs have been saved following the announcement that Hays Travel is to buy Thomas Cook’s entire portfolio of 555 shops. Hays is aiming to reopen all shops as soon as possible and all Thomas Cook employees who were made redundant will be offered their old jobs back. In addition, over 100 new jobs will be created at Hays’ head office in Sunderland. Thomas Cook ceased trading in September 2019 after failing to obtain £200m of extra funding.

Links of London in administration

Thu, 10/10/2019 The jewellery retailer Links of London has gone into administration. The 29-year-old business employs 350 people and operates from 28 stores and seven concessions across the UK. The business continues to trade while the administrators look for a buyer.

Red Industries acquires Haz Environmental

Fri, 04/10/2019 Waste management business Red Industries has bolstered its market position with the takeover of West Bromwich-based competitor Haz Environmental. Established as hazardous waste specialist in 2006, Red Industries has grown to become one of the UK’s leading independent waste management businesses, with Haz being its second acquisition in 12 months and third in two years. Red bought Environmental Resource Group in 2018 and Walleys Landfill in 2016.

Dr. Oetker seals sweet deal for Cake Craft World

Fri, 04/10/2019 Dr. Oetker has acquired baking business Cake Craft World. Dr. Oetker’s UK MDs’ expressed enthusiasm for investing in a successful, specialist baking business with a relevant online presence for hobby and semi-professional bakers. Dr. Oetker completed the acquisition of french baked goods and desserts brand Alsa from Unilever Group in March this year.

Severfield seals £30m deal for steelwork firm

Fri, 04/10/2019 Structural steelwork specialist Harry Peers & Co has been sold in a deal worth £30m. Severfield will acquire 100% of its share capital for an initial cash consideration of £18m, with a £12m performance-based sum payable in late 2020. Harry Peers specialises in the nuclear, process industries and power generation sectors and reported turnover of £21.2m for the financial year ended 30 April 2019.

Global Solutions for Clothing acquires fellow Nottingham manufacturer

Fri, 04/10/2019 Soft play equipment specialist Active Learning has been taken over by fellow Nottingham manufacturer Global Solutions for Clothing for an undisclosed six figure sum. The deal supports Global Solutions for Clothing’s Pretend to Bee children’s costume brand. It has created costumes for 25 years, and counts The Walt Disney Corporation among its customers.

LDC invests £24m in MBO of SRL Traffic Systems

Fri, 04/10/2019 Mid-market private equity investor LDC has backed a management buyout of SRL Traffic Systems for £24m. SRL is the UK’s leading manufacturer of portable traffic lights and equipment. SRL has a nationwide network of 26 depots as well as the industry’s widest range of temporary pedestrian and traffic light systems. SRL employs c. 140 people, operates a fleet of more than 7,500 units and reported turnover of £15.6m for the financial year ended April 2018.

Rosenblatt agrees £22m deal for Convex Capital

Fri, 04/10/2019 Manchester corporate finance specialist Convex Capital has been sold to London law firm Rosenblatt for £22m. The majority of the consideration is to be paid in shares, with a maximum of 40% to be paid in cash from existing resources. The deal is expected to generate a regular flow of fee-based work for Rosenblatt’s corporate division.

SSE Audio continues UK expansion

Fri, 04/10/2019 Redditch audio production company SSE Audio has acquired UK audio rental and flight case manufacturer BCS Audio. Founded in 1976 by John and Heather Penn, SSE Audio offers pro audio services including rentals, sales and installations. It has grown significantly in recent years with acquisitions of fellow UK audio businesses Wigwam and Capital Sound. It was bought out by Canadian firm Solotech last year.

LDC backs buyout of ELE Advanced Technologies

Fri, 04/10/2019 Private equity investor LDC has supported a secondary buyout of precision engineering firm ELE Advanced Technologies from Albion Capital and Maven Capital Partners. ELE is a leading manufacturer of specialist components for aerospace, industrial gas turbines, and commercial diesel sectors, with its clients including Rolls-Royce, Safran, Siemens, GE Avio, GE Power and MAN Diesel & Turbo. It generated turnover of £14m and employs more than 180 people at facilities in Colne, Lancashire and Trencin, Slovakia.

NDB Engineering acquires Cofast

Fri, 04/10/2019 Fastenex (Industrial Fasteners), the Willenhall-based holding company of NDB Engineering, has secured a multimillion-pound funding package to acquire Company Fasteners (Cofast). Based in Plymouth, Cofast supplies fastenings and bearings to clients in the South West that include the Devonport Royal Dockyard. NDB Engineering's range of niche products cater to the defence, aerospace, naval and energy sectors, among others.

World High Life acquires Love Hemp for £9m

Fri, 04/10/2019 Medicinal cannabis investment firm World High Life has announced a £9m deal to buy British cannabis oil brand Love Hemp, as it seeks to grow its European business. World High Life intends to fund the deal in part through a £5m share placing. Based in London, Love Hemp's cannabidiol (CBD) and hemp products are stocked by the likes of Sainsbury's, Ocado, Holland and Barrett and WH Smith. A growing number of cannabis companies have either listed or are seeking floatations in London, hoping that the UK will be at the forefront of the sector's expansion in Europe, with a particular focus on Germany

OSSL Group sells Bromford Iron & Steel

Thu, 03/10/2019 Thirsk-based All Steels Trading has completed the acquisition of Bromford Iron & Steel from OSSL Group. Bromford Iron & Steel has a 200-year history manufacturing hot rolled long products. It employs 38 people in Oldbury, where the local history in iron and steel processing has been traced back as far as 1610. Established in 2006, All Steels Trading is an £80m turnover steel trading firm.

Bremsen Technik acquires Remanufactured Systems

Thu, 03/10/2019 Automotive products supplier Bremsen Technik has acquired Remanufactured Systems (RSL) as part of a seven-figure funding package from HSBC UK. The deal adds 12 staff to its existing headcount of 89, and adds commercial vehicle remanufacturing to its capabilities. It has doubled in size and tripled its headcount in recent years, with this move boosting its turnover to £30m from £25m in 2018.

LBP Optics agrees deal for Symons Mirror Technology

Thu, 03/10/2019 LBP Optics has agreed a deal for Symons Mirror Technology. LBP Optics is the sister company of infrared optics manufacturer ULO Optics, a world-leading manufacturer of metal mirrors for industrial laser, scientific and defence applications. Symons is a specialist in precision single point diamond machining.

AAK expands ingredient portfolio

Thu, 03/10/2019 Ingredients and fats supplier AAK has acquired 80% of Soya International to expand its ingredient portfolio with speciality lecithins. Lecithin is a by-product from the processing of vegetable oils such as soy, sunflower and rapeseed, and a natural emulsifier. AAK reported turnover of £13.2m in 2018.

Vision 33 acquires B1 Systems

Thu, 03/10/2019 IT consulting firm Vision33 has acquired B1 Systems. Both companies are SAP Business One cloud application development partners.

Motorway Direct sells broking business to CPP

Thu, 03/10/2019 Motorway Direct has sold Business & Domestic Insurance Services to CPP Group, a deal which sees CPP enter the insurance broker market for the first time.

Parking Facilities bought for £12.4m

Thu, 03/10/2019 Parking and access control products manufacturer Parking Facilities has been acquired by Hill & Smith Holdings in a £12.4m deal. Established in 2000 and based in Tamworth, Parking Facilities reported turnover of £11.3m in its last financial year.

Begbies Traynor announces Regeneratus deal

Thu, 03/10/2019 Begbies Traynor has moved to strengthen its service offering in the South West of England with the acquisition of Regeneratus. Begbies completed its acquisition of corporate recovery services firm Dunion & Co in September.

Ocean Outdoor acquires Visual Art Media

Thu, 03/10/2019 Ocean Outdoor is to expand further into the European marketplace following the announcement that it has acquired Visual Art Media. Founded in Stockholm in 1997, Visual Art operates more than 25,000 out of home advertising screens across 24 countries.

NVM backs Secure Retail MBO

Thu, 03/10/2019 NVM Private Equity has backed the management buyout of Secure Retail. Established in 2003, Secure Retail supplies a range of technology products to clients in the retail, hospitality and infrastructure sectors.

Paddy Power owner creates world's largest online betting group

Thu, 03/10/2019 Flutter Entertainment, the owner of online betting giants Paddy Power and Betfair, has agreed to buy The Stars Group (TSG), the owner of Sky Bet, for £10bn. The deal will create the world's largest online betting company by revenue, and provides Flutter with a route into the fast-growing US market for sports betting. The combined group would have had revenues of £3.8bn last year. Receiving immediate approval from investors, and expected to create annual savings of £140m, the move saw shares in Flutter jump 20%. The deal also includes a commercial tie-up with US broadcaster Fox Sports.

British Study Centres buys Cactus Worldwide

Thu, 03/10/2019 Cactus Worldwide, a provider of foreign language training, has been taken over by British Study Centres. Cactus Worldwide offers TEFL and language learning courses in 120 cities globally, including 11 in the UK. BSC has eight all-year English language schools across the UK, as well as three overseas in Algeria, Kyrgyzstan and the Ukraine.

Afin Technologies to expand in US

Thu, 03/10/2019 Stockport-based app specialist Afin Technologies, formerly SurveyMe, has expanded in the US in a deal believed to be worth £20m. With funding from investment manager Deepridge, Afin has acquired Entertainment, a provider of local and national price promotions, including shopping and eating out offers, in North America. It employs 77 staff in Troy, Michigan. Afin has plans to increase Entertainment's headcount by 50 post-acquisition, as well as creating 10 new jobs in Stockport – doubling the firm's workforce.

Lovell Minnick agrees £261m deal for Charles Taylor

Thu, 03/10/2019 The American private equity firm Lovell Minnick has agreed a £261m deal to take over Charles Taylor, a provider of management, adjusting and support services within the insurance industry. Charles Taylor has over 3,000 staff distributed across 120 locations in more than 30 countries worldwide.

Endless acquires Moda Furnishings

Thu, 03/10/2019 The outdoor furniture retailer Moda Furnishings has been taken over by the private equity firm Endless. Moda was established in 2014 and provides its products through its website and two showrooms in Manchester and Caterham, Surrey

Diploma seals £6.9m deal for DMR

Thu, 03/10/2019 Diploma plc has bought DMR Seals for £6.9m. DMR is a distributor of bespoke machined seals and gaskets to the oil & gas, chemical, pharmaceutical and food industries.

Markel UK buys Caunce O'Hara

Thu, 03/10/2019 Markel UK, the division of Markel International that provides insurance, tax and legal services for SMEs, has acquired the online freelancer and contractor business of Caunce O’Hara.

sk:n takes over clinic from administration

Thu, 03/10/2019 sk:n has acquired the business and assets of Waveriver, a Manchester-based operator of skin clinics which went into administration earlier in 2019. sk:n was acquired from Graphite Capital by TriSpan earlier this year.

SSE sells household energy services to OVO Energy

Thu, 03/10/2019 SSE has sold its GB household energy and related services business to OVO Energy. The deal, which includes the customers, operations and employees for energy, telecoms and home services, is worth £500m and will take OVO’s customer base up to near five million.

September 2019

ConvaTec acquires Southlake Medical Supplies

Fri, 27/09/2019 ConvaTec has signed an agreement to purchase the assets of Southlake Medical Supplies. Based in Texas, Southlake is an independent provider of catheter-related equipment and supplies, generating c. £4m in revenues in 2018. The deal strengthens ConvaTec's Home Distribution Group in the US.

Ancala takes stake in Liverpool John Lennon Airport

Fri, 27/09/2019 Investment firm Ancala Partners has acquired a 45% interest in Liverpool John Lennon Airport (LJLA) from Peel Group (35%) and Liverpool City Council (10%). LJLA is the UK's 12th busiest airport, serving more than five million passengers in 2018. In July, it was awarded the UK's only five-star rating for flight punctuality.

AFH extends streak of acquisitions

Fri, 27/09/2019 Acquisitive Bromsgrove group AFH has announced a £3.2m acquisition of Broadleaf Financial Services, less than a week from sealing £7.2m of deals for Mulberry Independent Financial Advisers and Hemel Hempstead-based AE Garment Independent Financial Services. Broadleaf is an IFA business based in Wirral. The deal includes four advisers and their support staff, and £140m of funds under management.

Armada Janse sold to MS International

Fri, 27/09/2019 Doncaster manufacturer MS International has announced a deal for Dutch firm Armada Janse from Armada Group. Established in 1935, Armada Janse is a provider of illuminated advertising, media facades, signage, public illumination and creative lighting solutions.

Core Facility Services and FM Energy merge

Fri, 27/09/2019 Huddersfield facilities management company Core Facility Services has merged with FM Energy. Core will take over FM Energy's portfolio of commercial and charity clients, and extend its range of energy purchasing, efficiency and bill validation services. The deal supports its sustainability management unit in particular. Core now employs 70 people in Yorkshire and expects to make a number of strategic hires over the next 12 months to strengthen all four of its business areas - energy, estates, waste and IT - as it begins to expand its footprint beyond Yorkshire.

Bristow & Sutor acquires Credit Style

Fri, 27/09/2019 Judicial services and debt recovery group Bristow & Sutor has acquired Credit Style. Established in 1977 and now a portfolio company of Sovereign Capital Partners, Bristow & Sutor employs over 450 staff to support commercial and local authority debt collection. The expanded group will manage c. 1.9 million cases per annum.

Better Collective buys odds comparison site

Fri, 27/09/2019 Stockholm-listed iGaming affiliate Better Collective has completed a deal for UK-facing odds comparison site The £2.2m deal will support Better Collective’s newly established UK office, adding local SEO knowledge to the team.

UK's largest peacetime repatriation underway as Thomas Cook ceases trading

Tue, 24/09/2019 The world’s oldest travel company, Thomas Cook, has ceased trading after failing to obtain £200m of extra funding. The news puts 9,000 jobs at risk in the UK, and leaves 150,000 Thomas Cook customers potentially stranded overseas. The Prime Minister Boris Johnson confirmed the Government refused to step in to rescue the company, saying such a move would create a “moral hazard”. Shadow chancellor John McDonnell said the government should have made a “financial intervention” to give the situation “some breathing space”.

Greencore buys food-to-go firm Freshtime

Fri, 20/09/2019 UK food producer Greencore has bought food-to-go company Freshtime, expanding its presence in a growing but competitive category. The £56m deal has been lauded as an ‘excellent strategic fit’ by Greencore CEO Patrick Coveney, increasing its capacity in a familiar business and customer set. Freshtime operates a single facility in Boston, Lincolnshire, and had gross assets of £22m at the end of 2018.

Scott Brothers buys royal supplier H&L Russel

Fri, 20/09/2019 UK homeware supplier Scott Brothers has added more than 400 new products to its catalogue with a deal for H&L Russel. Established in 1888, H&L Russel is a leading manufacturer and supplier of garment hangers (with a Royal Warrant as suppliers to the Queen), as well as garment rails, clothes care products, kitchen utensils and laundry items.

Shard supports Alexander Technologies MBO

Fri, 20/09/2019 Shard Credit Partners has announced £9.2m loan to support the MBO of Alexander Technologies Europe, a portable battery pack manufacturer. ATEL has been bought by President and CEO Michael Shirley from US private equity group Woodside Capital. Founded over 40 years ago, ATEL works closely with blue-chip OEM customers in the design and production of customised rechargeable battery packs.

Merger agreed between Healthwork and Hobson Health

Fri, 20/09/2019 Manchester and Stoke-on-Trent based firms Healthwork and Hobson Health have merged to create the largest occupational health firm in the North West. The combined firm has 125 employees and eight locations.

MBO completed at Parweld

Fri, 20/09/2019 Welding equipment manufacturer and wholesaler Parweld has completed a management buyout. Parweld is a leading global brand in arc and gas welding torches, machines, consumables and protection equipment. The £16m turnover firm sells to a global customer base from its distribution centre in Bewdley, Worcestershire, and has a manufacturing facility in China.

Equiniti acquires Richard Davies Investor Relations

Fri, 20/09/2019 London-based international tech services firm Equiniti has taken over Richard Davies Investor Relations. The deal is Equiniti’s latest investment in its complementary suite of services for corporate governance professionals, which includes investor relations, company secretarial, ESG, proxy analytics and solicitation.

Kallik secures investment from FPE Capital

Fri, 20/09/2019 Tamworth-based labelling and artwork management specialist Kallik has secured backing from UK growth equity investor FPE Capital. Kallik provides labelling and artwork management cloud software solutions to the medical device, pharmaceutical and chemicals sectors.

ComAp buys engine control division from IPU

Fri, 20/09/2019 Manufacturer ComAp has agreed to buy the engine control division of UK business Industrial Power Units (IPU). IPU has been a ComAp distributor for two decades, led by group managing director Robert Beebee. Based in the Czech Republic, ComAp has said its new UK subsidiary will allow it to extend its reach in the power generation, renewables, marine and engine control markets.

Coveris seals deal for Amberley Adhesives

Fri, 20/09/2019 Coveris has acquired Amberley Adhesives. A UK supplier of high-quality self-adhesive labels, Amberley will be integrated into Coveris' Labels & Board division. The acquisition adds a footprint in the personal care and home markets to Coveris' existing presence in the fresh, chilled and ambient segments.

TEG acquires UK promoter MJR Group

Fri, 20/09/2019 APAC market leader TEG has officially expanded into Europe with the acquisition of UK-based promoter and venue operator MJR Group. MJR promotes 2,000 shows a year and owns and operates venues across the UK, such as Cardiff's Tramshed and The Mill in Birmingham, on top of having stakes in six other venues including The Warehouse in Leeds.

Euro Food Brands sells illy coffee distribution business

Fri, 20/09/2019 Euro Food Brands has sold the UK division of the illy coffee distribution business to illycaffè. The disposal includes the transfer of business, assets and staff and will see the Italian firm directly manage the UK distribution centres, although Euro Food Brands will continue to manage the supply of all retail and e-commerce retail customers on illycaffè’s behalf.

The Book People offloads Qwerkity

Fri, 20/09/2019 Endless-backed The Book People has sold online and mail order business Qwerkity to UK gifts and gadgets retailer Menkind. The Book People acquired Qwerkity in 2017, but has opted to refocus on its core business. Menkind has 60 permanent high street shops as well as an online store.

British Steel subsidiary finds buyer

Fri, 06/09/2019 British Steel's TSP Projects has been bought by international transport consultancy Systra, saving hundreds of jobs. The deal will double Systra's presence in the UK, with TSP Projects' extensive experience of civils, electrification and track works complementing its existing UK rail engineering services. TSP has annual turnover of £35m and employs more than 400 people at fives offices in York, Birmingham, Bristol, Manchester and Reading. The deal includes over £70m of pension liabilities, and has no impact on continuing talks regarding the rest of British Steel, after it was pushed into

Fintech firm Ipagoo scooped out of administration

Fri, 06/09/2019 UK fintech firm Ipagoo has been purchased out of administration by Anglo-Dutch investment group Chairmans Financial, a month on from the suspension of its customer accounts. Chairmans has bought 100% of the firm as well as selected assets from its parent company Orwell Group, which developed Ipagoo's software. Ipagoo was launched in 2015 by former Goldman Sachs Asset Management director Carlos Sanchez, providing a multi-currency account that can be opened more swiftly than traditional banks.

Boyds agrees deal for Blue Duck Consulting

Fri, 06/09/2019 Pharmaceutical and biotech product development consultancy Boyds has enhanced its clinical and medical affairs services offering with the acquisition of Blue Duck Consulting. Since 2013, Blue Duck provides expert preclinical and clinical drug development strategies and specialist monitoring and project management of clinical operations services in a range of therapeutic areas. Blue Duck was founded by Dr Karen O'Hanlon, a programme manager with 17 years' experience at firms including hVIVO and SRA Global Clinical Developments, and will join Boyds as director of clinical operations.

Premier Asset Management and Miton merge

Fri, 06/09/2019 Premier Asset Management and Miton have merged to create a group with assets under management of some £11.5bn. The all-share merger deal sees Miton shareholders receive 0.3 shares in Premier per share, valuing them at 56.7p, a premium of 38% on its last close price. Premier saw its AUM rise to £6.86bn as of 30 September 2018, with turnover up almost 20% to £48.8m.

CNH Industrial harvests FMIS provider AgDNA

Fri, 06/09/2019 CNH Industrial has agreed to take over farm management information systems (FMIS) provider AgDNA. The deal allows CNH customers and third-party users to profit from AgDNA's single point data integration, mapping and analytical tools.

AdviserPlus acquires Working Transitions

Fri, 06/09/2019 HR services group AdviserPlus has acquired Working Transitions, an organisational change, career transition and tailored coaching solutions consultancy. Founded in 1993, Working Transitions has served over 1,000 clients, including FTSE 100 companies and government departments, across sectors such as financial services, manufacturing, retail and legal. The acquisition builds on AdviserPlus' acquisition of HR platform implementation firm Succeed in 2018 and its UK partnership with HR business analytics specialist HCMI. AdviserPlus employs more than 300 people.

Ricor-Walpres deal creates £80m turnover group

Fri, 06/09/2019 Warwickshire-based engineering specialist Ricor Global has acquired Walsall Pressings Company and D.R.B. Engineering (Walpres) for an undisclosed sum. The deal creates an £80m turnover group with seven factories distributed across the UK, Poland and Slovakia. Walpres manufactures automotive body pressings and assemblies for automotive OEMs and tier one suppliers. Ricor has called the acquisition a "transformational opportunity", augmenting its product capabilities and OEM customer base at the heart of the European automotive industry.

AFI-Uplift announces private equity injection

Fri, 06/09/2019 AFI-Uplift, a powered access platforms specialist that offers machine rentals and sales alongside training and health & safety courses, has bought Facelift (GB). The announcement, in tandem with a long-term financing arrangement with Pricoa Private Capital, is said to be worth c. £160m in total. Facelift reported revenues of £12m in 2018 and has a total rental fleet of 700 machines. The acquisition takes AFI-Uplift’s fleet to 7,500.

RSK acquires Geocore Investigations

Fri, 06/09/2019 Environmental, engineering and technical services consultancy RSK has acquired Geocore Investigations, its fifth deal this financial year. RSK employs more than 3,100 staff in 100 offices globally, and has revenues of more than £250m. Geocore is a subsidence investigation specialist with 30 staff.

Great Rail Journeys buys rival

Fri, 06/09/2019 Great Rail Journeys (GRJ) is to acquire Vacations by Rail (VBR), an independent US provider of escorted and independent rail holidays. The deal bolsters GRJ’s position as global market leader, and provides a path to new product areas such as its newly launch Rail River Cruise Range. It hit turnover of £86m in the year to 31 October 2018.

Stacey Cables bought out of administration

Fri, 06/09/2019 Cheshire manufacturer Stacey Europe has seen its assembly business sold to Autac, after falling into administration in July. Launched 30 years ago, Stacey Europe supplied cable assemblies to the automotive, energy, scientific, medical, highways and railways sectors. While some staff have moved with the business, most have lost their jobs.

MBO completed at ATM

Fri, 06/09/2019 Boroughbridge-based vegetation management, fencing and landscaping firm ATM has completed an MBO. With backing from Fresh Equity, the £350,000 deal rounds off an 18-month branch-out from US parent company DeAngelo Bros.

IDHL Group buys Wired Plus

Fri, 06/09/2019 IDHL Group has acquired email marketing and automation platform Wired Plus for an undisclosed sum. The deal augments IDHL’s digital portfolio with the addition of Wired’s automation software. It is IDHL’s first platform acquisition and first product with a SaaS business model.

Park Place Technologies buys Entuity

Thu, 05/09/2019 Park Place Technologies has acquired data analytics firm Entuity. Founded in London and now based in Boston, Entuity’s technology focuses on network performance monitoring to ensure uninterrupted service delivery. The deal is Park Places’ second since its takeover of MCSA Group in April.

Diageo acquires Seedlip

Thu, 05/09/2019 Diageo has announced the acquisition of a significant majority shareholding in Seedlip, the world’s first distilled non-alcoholic spirits brand. The acquisition has been made via Distill Ventures, Diageo’s investment vehicle for small businesses – building a 20% stake taken in 2016. Distill has invested roughly £60m in c. 15 drinks brands.

Rutland Partners takes over fast-growing HCC

Thu, 05/09/2019 Rutland Partners has taken a majority share in Hereford Contract Canning (HCC). HCC is the second largest contract canning provider in the UK. It saw turnover jump 40% from £13.1m to £18.3m between 2017 and 2018

Marlowe agrees £7.2m deal for Quantum Compliance

Thu, 05/09/2019 Worcestershire health and safety firm Quantum Compliance has been bought by Marlowe in a deal worth up to £7.2m. Quantum conducts health & safety audit and consultancy services for approximately 8,000 commercial properties each year. It is Marlowe’s fifth acquisition in the past 12 months.

Grace Group acquires Rosehill Press

Thu, 05/09/2019 Rosehill Press has been acquired by Hertfordshire-based creative agency Grace Group. Rosehill has received investment from its new owners and will be managed by a new-look senior team led by Steve Day.

CMI and BTA merge

Thu, 05/09/2019 UK MSPs CMI and BTA have merged, creating a £11m-turnover business with 100 staff and offices in Belfast, London and Maidenhead.

Langricks doubles size of business

Thu, 05/09/2019 Langricks Chartered Accountants has acquired Michael Bell & Co, doubling the size of the business. The deal adds key tax and audit expertise to its existing compliance and advisory services, and takes its headcount to 19.

Kingswood Holdings expands North with deal for WFI

Thu, 05/09/2019 Wealth management business Kingswood Holdings has completed a £14m deal for WFI Financial, a financial planning firm based in Sheffield. The deal expands Kingswood's national footprint to the Midlands and North, with the inclusion of WFI's offices in Derby, Lincoln and Grimsby. Altogether WFI has assets under management of more than £550m.

Festicket acquires Event Genius and Ticket Arena

Thu, 05/09/2019 Festicket, a specialist in selling tickets to music festivals, has acquired the software platform Event Genius. Event Genius offers a complete event solution for event organisers, spanning online ticket sales, POS software, ticket scanning, seat reservations, marketing and analytics. The deal includes its consumer-facing brand Ticket Arena.

German manufacturer buys Cirteq

Thu, 05/09/2019 The German manufacturer Titgemeyer has bought Cirteq. Based in Keighley, Cirteq manufactures fasteners and retaining rings.

Dechra acquires Ampharmco for £24.5m

Thu, 05/09/2019 Veterinary pharmaceutical specialist Dechra has strengthened its US product portfolio with the £24.5m acquisition of Ampharmco and its associated holding companies, Dragon Fire and Black Griffin.

Endless sells James Briggs to Tetrosyl

Thu, 05/09/2019 Mid-market private equity firm Endless has sold James Briggs to Tetrosyl. James Briggs is a speciality and consumer chemicals manufacturer. Tetrosyl is a manufacturer and supplier of car care products.

Quaker Houghton seals £80m deal for Norman Hay

Thu, 05/09/2019 The speciality chemicals company Norman Hay has been bought by Quaker Houghton for £80m. Norman Hay serves a number of industries including aerospace, automotive, oil and gas and power generation. The deal is expected to complete in October 2019.

STATS and Perform to merge

Thu, 05/09/2019 A new market leading sports data company has been formed following the announcement that STATS and Perform are to merge. The new entity is called STATS Perform and will provide data-led sports research, news and video content in combination with live betting streams, integrity services, and AI-powered solutions. It will employ more than 1,600 full-time employees across 25 countries, including a 40 strong sport-focused AI team.

Pilgrim's Pride acquires Tulip from Danish Crown

Thu, 05/09/2019 The American poultry supplier Pilgrim’s Pride has acquired Tulip Limited from Danish Crown. The £290m deal creates one of the largest integrated prepared foods businesses in the UK.

MBO completed at Siddall and Hilton Products

Thu, 05/09/2019 Siddall and Hilton Products, a historic manufacturer based in Brighouse, West Yorkshire, has completed an MBO. Siddall and Hilton Products produces welded steel mesh high-security, general fencing and industrial mesh panels. It has 53 staff and reported revenues of £18m in the financial year to 31 March 2018.

The EF Group acquires Catercost

Thu, 05/09/2019 Catering cloud-based service provider The EF Group has bought menu planning, nutrition and allergen management services provider Catercost. The EF Group, which trades as e-foods, will use this acquisition to expand its software platform.

Beech Tree buys Avid Insurance Services

Thu, 05/09/2019 Avid Insurance Services, a specialist managing general agent based in Leeds, has been bought by Beech Tree Private Equity. Founded in 2006, Avid specialises in travel, social housing and council leasehold markets. It is a Lloyds broker and Lloyds coverholder, writing more than £40m of gross written premiums.

John Parker & Son bought from administration

Thu, 05/09/2019 The Shoreham site of steel firm John Parker & Son has been saved from administration from the UK's biggest steel stockholder. Barrett Steel will expand its nationwide depot network to 27 locations and add 50 new staff to its team. The deal bolsters the £317m-turnover firm in the South of England in particular.

Octopus Energy acquires Co-op Energy

Thu, 05/09/2019 Challenger brand Octopus Energy has bought out rival Co-operative Energy, becoming one of the UK's fastest growing energy suppliers. Co-op Energy supplies gas and electricity to c. 300,000 homes. Its acquisition, thought to be worth over £30m, pushes Octopus Energy past one million customers despite only four years in the market. Co-op Energy took on 130,000 customers with the acquisition of Flow Energy last year. Octopus Energy is owned by Octopus Group, an early backer of the property site Zoopla that also backs Big Gym, Secret Escapes and Eve mattresses through its investment arm Octopus

August 2019

Inflexion acquires roofing firm Marley

Fri, 30/08/2019 Belgian building materials group Etex has announced the sale of its roofing business to private equity investor Inflexion. Marley is a leading supplier of roofing tiles and components with 600 staff, five manufacturing sites and two distribution centres. It has annual revenues of more than £200m.

IMI agrees deal for US valve manufacturer

Fri, 30/08/2019 Engineering group IMI has agreed to buy US manufacturer PBM in a deal worth £70m. Based in Pennsylvania, PBM makes industrial valves and flow control products for the pharmaceutical and biotechnology, consumer products and chemical end-markets. It will join IMI's critical engineering division.

ClearCourse acquires e-clinic

Fri, 30/08/2019 ClearCourse Partnership has acquired e-clinic, a patient and clinic management software provider. ClearCourse is a group of technology companies that provides solutions to the membership, events & bookings and sports & leisure centres. This is its 13th acquisition since its foundation in 2018.

CH&Co makes double acquisition from Mitie

Fri, 30/08/2019 Catering giant CH&Co has bought Gather & Gather and Creativevents from Mitie. The deal increases CH&Co's turnover by £137m, and will the two firms' catering contracts with Mitie continue under an exclusive partnership agreement. The businesses operate across 330 sites and have 3,600 employees.

Ambulance builder announces MBO

Fri, 30/08/2019 Ambulance builder O&H Vehicle Technology has completed a management buyout from private equity owner Endless. Managing director Oliver North and entrepreneur Ken Davy have led the buyout, having worked together to grow fire fighting equipment supplier North Fire prior to its acquisition in 2014. O&H is responsible for the majority of ambulances on Yorkshire’s roads. In 2018, Yorkshire Ambulance Service (YAS) placed an order for over 300 new units.

Octopus Group buys wealthtech startup Seccl

Fri, 30/08/2019 Octopus Group has agreed to buy Bath-based wealthtech startup Seccl for £10m. Seccl is a cloud-based trading, settlement and custody administration platform for wealth managers and financial advisers. The firm currently has around £10m of assets on its platform and 300 customers.

inTec Business Solutions buys rival

Fri, 30/08/2019 inTec Business Solutions has acquired rival firm Cheshire Business Services (CBS) for an undisclosed sum. inTec's strategy is to acquire telecoms resellers and overlay technology capabilities to broaden its service offering. It is partnered with the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund and receives acquisition funding from the Manchester branch of BOOST&Co.

Fates of Bury and Bolton Wanderers raise questions for EFL

Fri, 30/08/2019 Football fans have called for an inquest into the English Football League after two clubs have come close to extinction in two days. Bury FC has been expelled from the Football League after failing to find a buyer, with Bolton Wanderers FC close to following suit but for a last minute takeover by Football Ventures (Whites) saving it from liquidation. Last December, Steve Dale purchased Bury for just £1 from Stewart Day, who had left the club with huge debts, primarily on its ground which had been remortgaged several times. Despite their financial troubles, Bury went on to secure a remarkable promotion to League One, which will now play out its season with only 23 teams. Bolton, meanwhile, had been in administration since May after Laurence Bassini's takeover attempt fell through. The club has found itself in court at least once a year since 2015.

Springhill Care Group sold to PrimeLife

Fri, 30/08/2019 The owners of Springhill Care Group have sold the firm to PrimeLife, causing nine redundancies at its head office. Springhill is a provider of nursing, residential, rehabilitation, dementia and day care for adults in Bristol and Lancashire. The deal includes the sale of the freehold of two former Springhill care homes to AEW UK Real Return Fund for £11.5m. PrimeLife is a UK-wide provider of health and social care services that operates more than 60 purpose built care homes.

Forecourt retailer acquires six sites

Fri, 30/08/2019 East Yorkshire forecourt retailer Sewell On The Go has bought six of its rented sites from Rix Petroleum. The £10m deal means Sewell Group now owns all 13 of its forecourts and convenience stores in Hull and the East Riding of Yorkshire, serving more than four million customers a year.

Hero acquires The Balanced You

Fri, 30/08/2019 Health and technology firm Hero has acquired The Balanced You, a provider of mindfulness sessions, wellbeing retreats, reiki and hypnotherapy. The deal is Hero's third in 12 months, and comes just weeks prior to the launch of its first physical training club, in Angel Gardens, Manchester opposite Amazon's new HQ. Hero raised £1.3m to support growth overseas in June.

Sharp Business Systems UK acquires Complete IT

Fri, 30/08/2019 Sharp Business Systems UK has acquired Complete IT, a leading IT support services company. The deal strengthens SBSUK's position in the IT market with a more sophisticated suite of integrated solutions for the workplace. Complete IT reported turnover of £17.5m in the last financial year, up 18% from 2017-18.

ChangeGroup expands in Europe with deal for Swedish firm

Fri, 23/08/2019 London-headquartered FX firm ChangeGroup has extended its global reach with a deal for Swedish firm SVEA Ekonomi. The acquisition adds 16 branches and 100 staff to the UK-based group, growing its network to 118 outlets in 10 countries.

James Fisher buys Brazilian air diving service provider

Fri, 23/08/2019 Cumbria marine services group James Fisher has acquired a 60% stake in Continental Participação E Administração, the holding company of Serviços Marítimos Continental S.A., for £7.5m. Continental is an established air diving service provider to the offshore oil sector in Brazil.

Grosvenor Chemicals sold to Agro and Widecover

Fri, 23/08/2019 Grosvenor Chemicals, a Huddersfield-based firm which fell into administration as part of the Whyte Group last year, has been sold to JT Agro and Widecover. Grosvenor manufactured a wide variety of products for sectors including agrochemical, pharmaceutical, household and industrial markets, but has shut loss-making divisions since falling into administration and opted to focus on its profit-making agrochemicals division. Its new owner will trade as JT Grosvenor.

Arch Capital agrees deal for Barbican Group

Fri, 23/08/2019 Arch Capital Group has entered into an agreement to buy Barbican Group from funds managed by Carlson Capital. The deal, which includes Barbican Managing Agency, Lloyd's Syndicate 1955, Lloyd’s Special Purpose Arrangement (SPA) 6132, Castel Underwriting Agencies and others, deepens Arch's relationship with Lloyd's and the London market.

ActiveOps closes deal for OpenConnect

Fri, 23/08/2019 ActiveOps, a global provider of cloud-based digital operations management solutions, has acquired software firm OpenConnect. ActiveOps says the deal will enhance its Workware software suite capabilities with use of OpenConnect's data capture technology. ActiveOps serves customers in financial services, shared services, business process outsourcing firms, government, healthcare and other service industries.

Newsquest owner to merge with GateHouse Media

Fri, 23/08/2019 News Media Investment Group, the parent company of GateHouse Media, has agreed to buy Gannett (GCI), which owns USA Today and hundreds of local papers in the US as well as the UK's second largest regional newspaper publisher Newsquest since 1999. The deal creates "an unprecedented giant in American daily journalism". Newsquest owns a portfolio of more than 200 newspaper brands and magazines, including the Northern Echo.

Aurelius backs BT divestment from fleet solutions business

Fri, 23/08/2019 Private equity firm Aurelius has backed BT's divestment from its Solihull-headquartered fleet management business. BT Fleet Solutions is a leading UK commercial fleet management business, with revenues of £209.5m in 2017-18. Established in 2002, it employs 950 people and manages more than 80,000 vehicles for 26 blue chip clients. It operates a network of 65 in-house garages, 500 partner facilities and more than 50 mobile technicians. The carve-out includes an agreement on a long term partnership to manage BT's own fleet.

Accessible Transport Group gets back on track

Fri, 23/08/2019 Accessible Transport Group has finally found a buyer in National Express subsidiary West Midlands Accessible Transport, after falling into administration in March. Accessible Transport Group employed 700 people and operated more than 600 vehicles from nine depots across the region. Its new contract with Birmingham City Council will start in September, mostly supporting children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND). The group includes Ring and Ride West Midlands and Accessible Transport Group Contract Services.

Hasbro snaps up Peppa Pig owner for £3.3bn

Fri, 23/08/2019 US toymaker Hasbro, the company behind My Little Pony and Play-Doh, has acquired Peppa Pig owner Entertainment One for £3.3bn. The deal, which is three times what ITV offered in an aborted takeover attempt three years ago, has sent Entertainment One's share price soaring by 30% in early trading. It is the second multi-billion pound takeover of a UK-listed firm this week, with the recent drop in the pound over no-deal Brexit fears cited as a factor. eOne has made a handful of acquisitions this year, to grow its portfolio of non-scripted shows with a deal for Daisybeck Studios in July 2019 and and take over Audio Network for £178m in April 2019.

ReAssure to acquire Quilter life and pensions division

Fri, 23/08/2019 Life insurance group ReAssure has agreed to acquire Quilter's heritage life and pensions division, Old Mutual Wealth Life Assurance, for £425m. The deal follows an aborted attempt to float ReAssure stocks in June, with its parent company SwissRe pulling it within weeks citing weak investor demand. ReAssure is the UK's sixth largest life insurance group, employing 2,500 people across sites in Telford, Hitchin, London and Norwich. The deal will sees its assets under management grow by £12bn to £81bn and add a further 200,000 policies to its portfolio of 4.3 million.

I-COM owners transfer majority stake to staff

Fri, 23/08/2019 Manchester digital agency I-COM has marked its 15th anniversary with the establishment of an employee ownership trust. The move sees the company's owners transfer a majority stake in the firm to staff, to share in its profits as long as they remain staff.

LIV Group acquired by Cortland

Fri, 23/08/2019 Leeds-based build-to-rent specialist LIV Group has been acquired by US real estate, investment and management firm Cortland. LIV Group employs c. 120 people and operates 14 communities across the UK and Ireland, totalling 2,000 BTR apartments. It has around 7,000 more units due for completion by the end of 2021. Based in Atlanta, Cortland has announced plans to invest approximately £4bn in the UK BTR market in order to build a portfolio of around 10,000 homes.

Fishawack acquires 2e Creative

Thu, 22/08/2019 Acquisitive healthcare communications firm Fishawack has made a fourth acquisition in 12 months with a deal for 2e Creative, based in Indiana. 2e is described as a 'launch and growth agency' and counts Fortune 50 companies from the pharma, medtech and research biotech sectors among its clients. LDC-backed Fishawack reported £47.1m turnover for the financial year ended 31 March 2018.

Winburn Glass Norfolk to merge with Murray Harcourt

Thu, 22/08/2019 Leeds-based business advisory and accountancy firm Winburn Glass Norfolk and Murray Harcourt have agreed to merge. It will be incorporated into the Murray Harcourt brand.

Victoria in talks with Ibero Porcelánico

Thu, 22/08/2019 Flooring group Victoria has announced that it is in talks to acquire Spanish ceramics manufacturer Ibero Porcelánico. In July, Victoria refinanced through an offer of £300m in secured notes, aiming to fix its debt until 2024 in support of operational flexibility and its long-term growth plans. The move saw shares drop 35% in two days, wiping £260m of the Kidderminster firm's market value. It has since revealed growth in underlying earnings and revenues up 35% to £574m in its accounts for the year ended 30 March 2019. Victoria has made decisive strides into mainland Europe in recent years, with most of its business now based overseas. It acquired Spanish tiling group Saloni in August 2018.

Greene King acquired by Hong Kong investor

Thu, 22/08/2019 CK Asset Holdings, the property investment firm owned by Hong Kong billionaire Victor Li, has struck a multi-billion pound deal for Greene King, the UK's biggest listed pubs and brewery group. Taking advantage of the weak pound, CK Assets has offered 850p per share for the 220-year-old business, valuing it at £4.6bn minus debt. CK Assets has said it is relaxed by the economic prospects for the UK ahead of its scheduled departure from the EU, choosing instead to take a long-term view of British consumer spending. Faced with changing consumer trends, such as young people drinking less and and competition from cheap supermarket drinks, pub chains have sought consolidation in recent years, with Stonegate buying Ei Group for £3bn last month and Heineken taking over Punch Taverns in 2017.

Power Installations completes MBO

Fri, 16/08/2019 Power Installations has undergone an MBO, with backing from EV SME Loans. A team of 11 in Nantwich, Power Installations provides specialist cable jointing services to electricity distribution networks.

Aptean to buy Sanderson Group for £90.1m

Fri, 16/08/2019 Aptean has offered £90.1m for UK retail and manufacturing software developer Sanderson Group. Controlled by TA Associates and Vista Equity Partners, Aptean is a US enterprise solutions firm and has offered a premium of 9.8% on Sanderson’s last closing price. The deal will provide Aptean with an entry point to the UK and the rest of Europe.

92 jobs saved at Nicholl Food Packaging

Fri, 16/08/2019 92 jobs have been saved at Nicholl Food Packaging, following its purchase from administration by Coppice Alupack. A subsidiary of Euro Packaging Group, Coppice is a manufacturer and supplier of aluminium foil containers. Established in 1989, Nicholl is headquartered in Cannock and supplies the food distribution and processing industry with similar foil products. It reported £1.4m profit on revenues of £24.2m for the year to March 2018.

Stax Trade Centres acquires MP Smith

Fri, 16/08/2019 Stax Trade Centres has acquired hardware and ironmongery manufacturer MP Smith and Co for an undisclosed sum. The Brighouse-owned firm has been a supplier to Stax for years. Stax Trade Centres is based in Worsley, Manchester, and reported turnover of £118.6m for the financial year to September 2018.

Veincentre poised to expand following withdrawal of NHS funding

Fri, 16/08/2019 Marking the fourth investment from its £100m Impact fund, Palatine Private Equity has sealed a deal with Stoke-on-Trent based clinic Veincentre. Following the withdrawal of NHS funding for varicose vein sufferers, Veincentre will continue nationwide expansion with new clinics in Glasgow and Leeds later this year. It plans to open two new centres a year.

Hire purpose: online outfit rental firm acquires rival

Fri, 16/08/2019 Manchester-based online fashion hire firm Hire That Look has been acquired by rival HireStreet for an undisclosed sum. Launched a year ago by 26 year old investment banker Isabella West, HireStreet lets customers hire outfits for four to 16 days before they are returned.

Sports Direct buys Jack Wills for £12.8m

Fri, 16/08/2019 Sports Direct has announced it is to shut eight Jack Wills stores, following its acquisition for £12.8m earlier this month. Jack Wills has some 98 UK stores and 1,700 staff, as well as six franchises including in the Middle East. The takeover continues billionaire owner Mike Ashley’s acquisition spree for struggling retail brands, which has seen mixed returns so far. The largest acquisition, £90m for House of Fraser last year, was recently described as ‘terminal’ in its financial results. Sports Direct is reportedly seeking to reduce rents at Jack Wills stores to zero, in exchange for 5% of turnover for landlords.

1,100 jobs at risk as Boohoo buys Karen Millen and Coast

Fri, 16/08/2019 £2bn-valued fashion e-tailer Boohoo has snapped up Karen Millen and Coast from administration for £18.2m. Boohoo said the businesses were ‘high complementary additions to its scalable multi-brand platform’, opening opportunities with an older customer base. Administrators said 62 jobs will be axed immediately, while the two brands’ 32 UK stores and 177 concessions will continue to trade for a short period while assets are sold off. 1,100 jobs are at risk. Based in Manchester, Boohoo saw sales jump 39% in its latest quarter to more than £250m, after a tie-up with stars from hit show Love Island and social media campaign paid dividends. Boohoo’s brands include Nasty Gal, PrettyLittleThing and MissPap, bought in March 2019.

Charles Stanley buys Myddleton Croft

Fri, 16/08/2019 Leeds-based investment management firm Myddleton Croft has been bought by wealth management company Charles Stanley. Myddleton Croft has manages £96.5m of funds, and had turnover of £1.1m for the year ended 30 June 2019.

Fleetondemand acquires FleetEurope

Fri, 16/08/2019 BGF-backed mobility technology provider Fleetondemand has taken over FleetEurope for an undisclosed sum. The deal promises customers combined access to the UK’s largest vehicle rental fleet and branch network, boasting 600,000 vehicles available from 2,200 branch locations nationwide, via Fleetondemand’s Mobilleo platform. The system manages 320,000 rental transactions from 19,000 individual users a year.

Majestic Wine offloads business to focus on Naked Wines brand

Fri, 09/08/2019 Majestic Wine has agreed to sell its retail and commercial business to Bacchus Holdings, a vehicle controlled by funds managed by Fortress Investment Group, in a deal worth £100m. The sale includes everything but Majestic’s website, with £95m paid by Fortress for the businesses and one undisclosed property sold for redevelopment for £5m. The funds from the deal will be used to invest in Majestic’s Naked Wines brand, bought for £70m in 2015, as well as eliminating group debt and rewarding shareholders with £3.8m in dividends. Fortress intends to invest in Majestic Wine as a retail proposition favouring a face-to-face experience over online.

Travis Perkins accelerates Wickes demerger plans

Fri, 09/08/2019 Builders' merchants Travis Perkins has accelerated plans to demerge Wickes by 2020. Details of the proposed £500m spin-off were included in the group’s mid-year statement, where it revealed Wickes had seen sales growth of 9.7%. Travis Perkins’ retail division revenue, which includes Toolstation, Tile Giant and Wickes, stood at £695m. The move aims to simplify Travis Perkins' business and refocus on trade customers. Former Tesco executive David Wood was brought in to replace Wickes CEO Simon King in July after its operating profit dropped almost a third over two years to £69m.

Indeed acquires job advertising tech firm ClickIQ

Fri, 09/08/2019 Careers site Indeed has acquired ClickIQ, an automated job advertising tech platform. ClickIQ’s technology manages, tracks and optimises the performance of clients’ recruitment advertising in real-time, to reach both active and passive jobseekers. It has offices in Godalming and Aberdeen. Indeed reported turnover of £14.6m for the 2017 calendar year, up more than 75% from the previous year.

Angela Viney and Linda Heald merge

Fri, 09/08/2019 Angela Viney Conveyancing Services and Linda Heald & Co Property Lawyers have merged. Established nine years ago in Sowerby Bridge, Linda Heald specialises in the investor and buy-to-let market in England and Wales. Angela Viney meanwhile has more than 30 years’ experience. Viney herself was one of the first ever licensed conveyancers in England and Wales, and has served as Chair of the profession's regulatory body, the CLC.

Miss Group hits acquisition trail with deal for Ilait

Fri, 09/08/2019 BGF-backed web hosting company Miss Group has acquired global cloud wholesaler Ilait. Founded in 2006, Ilait provides white-label services such as email, web hosting, domain registration, dedicated servers and VPS services. In August 2018, Miss Group received £6.4m investment from BGF, with a further £13m in June to accelerate global expansion. This acquisition adds more than 35,000 customers to the group.

Assist Group joins idverde

Fri, 09/08/2019 French green service provider idverde has bought Assist Group, a specialist in grounds maintenance, arboriculture and highway services in the North West and Midlands. Based in St Helens, Assist has annual sales of £14m and employs over 200 people. Its acquisition improves idverde’s national coverage and boosts its headcount to more than 3,000.

Bon Bon's strikes sweet deal for hf Chocolates

Fri, 09/08/2019 Bon Bon’s (Wholesale) has acquired hf Chocolates, a leading importer, distributor and wholesaler of fine chocolates and novelties. The companies specialise in supplying luxury confectionery to department stores, retailers and visitor attractions. Bon Bon’s hopes to create around 10 jobs through the acquisition.

Brennan Industries buys Miric Engineering

Fri, 09/08/2019 Brennan Industries has acquired Miric Engineering, a manufacturer of standard and special fittings and adaptors based in Hucknall near Nottingham. The deal expands Brennan’s global manufacturing footprint to five centres, improving its offering to customers in the UK and rest of Europe.

SSB Group acquires Legacy Protection

Fri, 09/08/2019 Legal and financial services specialist SSB Group has made its first acquisition, of Bedfordshire-based firm Legacy Protection. The deal sees Legacy Protection's founder Paul Crowther take on the role of managing director of SSB Compliance.

Nationwide Stainless bought in MBO

Fri, 09/08/2019 Nationwide Stainless, a stockist and supplier of stainless steel based in Sheffield, has changed hands in a £4m MBO. Managing director Steve Laybourn has bought the firm, with funding from Lloyds Banking Group and alternative finance provider Caple.

Sanderson Recruitment makes double acquisition

Fri, 09/08/2019 Sanderson Recruitment has acquired the UK recruitment division of digital transformation group Sopra Steria, boosting its revenue past £550m and headcount to more than 300. The UK recruitment sector grew by 11% to £35.7bn last year. Sanderson also recently secured a sizeable shareholding in international recruitment consultancy iKas Global, providing it a foothold in the APAC region.

Orb bails Superdream out of administration

Fri, 09/08/2019 Edgbaston-based branding agency Orb has purchased Superdream from administration. The deal is backed by Elonex Group and sees Hannah Moreton and Aaron Jones take up positions in Orb's management team as Head of Client Services and Head of Digital, respectively.

EG Group adds another 600 stores to US network

Fri, 02/08/2019 Euro Garages owner EG Group has announced further expansion in the US with a deal for Cumberland Farms. Having had no US presence little over a year ago, this latest move will take EG Group's US network to 1,700 stores. Cumberland Farms employs 9,000 people and operates 600 convenience retail stores and fuel stations. The announcement closely follows news of a deal for 54 Fastrac stores in May, building on nearly £2bn of US acquisitions in 2018.

Prism Medical UK completes second acquisition of 2019

Fri, 02/08/2019 Prism Medical UK has sealed its second deal in as many months with Care-ability Healthcare, a manufacturer and supplier of sling products. The acquisition closely follows and complements Prism's takeover of bathing and handling specialist Assured Healthcare in June.

Founder completes buyout of Business Insight 3

Fri, 02/08/2019 Business Insight 3 has undergone a management buyout by founder and managing director Glen Higson. Bi3 is a specialist in security technology and retail intelligence

City Developments makes renewed bid for Millennium & Copthorne Hotels

Fri, 02/08/2019 Agapier Investments, a subsidiary of City Developments (CDL), has bid for the remaining shares in Millennium & Copthorne Hotels it doesn't already own for £2.23bn. CDL already owns 64.2% of M&C and intends to privatise the company. The offer of 685p is an increase of 65p on CDL's previous attempt in January 2018. Minority shareholders JNE Partners, MSD Capital, International Value Advisers, Classic Fund Management and BWM hold approximately 43.6% of M&C shares and are expected to recommend the offer to shareholders. M&C owns and manages more than 130 hotels across four brands, 20 of which are in the UK and include the Chelsea Harbour Hotels and the Bailey's Hotel London.

US insurance group swoops for Hettle Andrews & Associates

Fri, 02/08/2019 US insurance agency AssuredPartners has bought Hettle Andrews & Associates for an undisclosed sum. Based in Birmingham, Hettle Andrews is a risk management and insurance broking firm focused on the education, charity and corporate sectors.

JLEN splashes out on Yorkshire Hydropower

Fri, 02/08/2019 John Laing Environmental Assets Group (JLEN) has acquired Yorkshire Hydropower (YHL) for £4.3m. The deal includes the rights to two operational hydro projects and a battery storage system, further diversifying JLEN's portfolio of wind, solar, anaerobic digestion, waste and wastewater projects.

Begbies Traynor buys Dunion & Co

Fri, 02/08/2019 Begbies Traynor has acquired Dunion & Co, a Stoke-on-Trent based provider of corporate recovery services to businesses across Cheshire, Staffordshire and beyond. It will remain in its current Tunstall premises under the leadership of Diane Dunion, adopting the Begbies Traynor brand.

Altodigital buys Platinum to kiskstart M&A spree

Fri, 02/08/2019 Print specialist Altodigital has acquired Bedfordshire-based IT support services firm Platinum, as it bids to achieve 25% growth within three years. Altodigital has 492 staff and reported revenue of £71.2m for the year ended 30 September 2018.

Make It Cheaper acquires Smart Utility Management

Fri, 02/08/2019 ECI portfolio company Make It Cheaper has announced the acquisition of Smart Utility Management, a provider of energy utility management and switching services to SMEs. The deal brings MIC Group's total contracts under management to over 216,000.

SMP Group acquires Jersey-based Helm Trust Company

Fri, 02/08/2019 SMP Group has announced a deal for Helm Trust Company, a trust and corporate services provider based in Jersey. The deal gives SMP a presence in a key strategic jurisdiction and improves its overseas networks.

Jungle IT makes first acquisition

Thu, 01/08/2019 Mazars has sold its Leeds IT operations to Jungle IT for an undisclosed sum. Jungle is an IT reseller that provides brands including Dell, HP, Lenovo, Microsoft, Netapp and Toshiba. It has offices in Leeds and Halifax, and sees its headcount climb to 25 with this deal.

London agency Capella PR to become PAN UK

Thu, 01/08/2019 PAN Communications, a midsize US PR and marketing agency for B2B tech and healthcare brands, has acquired London agency Capella PR. The deal sees Capella rebrand as PAN UK, and opens opportunities for the 20-strong team in the US market.

RAW Technology to rebrand with RSK takeover

Thu, 01/08/2019 Environmental, engineering and technical services consultancy RSK has acquired RAW Technology, its fourth acquisition of the financial year. RAW is a specialist in inland oil spill response and remediation. Operating worldwide, it has 85 employees and 16 offices in the UK and Ireland. The firm will become part of RSK's contracting division and rebrand as RSK Raw once the deal completes.

Maven Capital Partners sells GEV Wind Power

Thu, 01/08/2019 Maven Capital Partners has sold GEV Wind Power to Bridges Fund Management. GEV provides blade repair and maintenance services to wind farm manufacturers and operators in the UK, Europe and the US.

Bidfood acquires Elite Fine Foods

Thu, 01/08/2019 Elite Fine Foods, a provider of food to more than 2,500 catering establishments across the UK, has been bought by Bidfood.

Entertainment One grows roster of non-scripted shows

Thu, 01/08/2019 Entertainment One has continued expanding its non-scripted activities in the UK with the acquisition of Daisybeck Studios. Established in 2013, Daisybeck is responsible for shows such as ‘The Yorkshire Vet’, ‘Springtime on the Farm’, ‘Big Week at the Zoo’ and ‘Made in Britain’.

Glendower Capital acquires controlling stake of Liberty

Thu, 01/08/2019 A consortium of investors led by Glendower Capital has bought Bluegem Capital Partners’ controlling stake in Liberty, in a deal which values the luxury department store at £300m.

Mobeus backs MBO of Star Brands

Thu, 01/08/2019 Mobeus has backed the management buyout of Star Brands, a branded and private label laundry and cleaning product manufacturer. Star Brands reported revenue of £24m in the financial year ended 31 August 2018.

YO! Sushi and SnowFox announce merger

Thu, 01/08/2019 The largest Japanese food company outside of Japan has been created with the news that YO! Sushi and US business SnowFox are to merge. The deal builds on YO! Sushi's takeover of North American chain Bento Sushi in 2017.

Just Eat agrees £16m deal for City Pantry

Thu, 01/08/2019 The online takeaway food delivery giant Just Eat has agreed to buy City Pantry for an initial sum of £16m. City Pantry, established in 2014, is a B2B catering marketplace where caterers and restaurants can link up with corporate customers providing food for their employees or clients. In separate news, Just Eat and have reached agreement on a possible merger which would create the world's largest online food delivery platform.

Bain Capital seals £3.2bn deal for Kantar

Thu, 01/08/2019 The private equity firm Bain Capital has agreed to buy 60% of Kantar from WPP. The deal, which values Kantar at £3.2bn, is part of WPP’s plan to develop Kantar into the world’s leading data, insights and consulting company.

Sigma GRP acquires shopfitting specialist Thompsons

Thu, 01/08/2019 Sigma GRP, a leading provider of outsourced solutions to blue chip retailers in the UK, Europe and Australia, has acquired Thompsons Contracts Blackpool. Thompsons is a specialist shopfitter, refurbishment and building contractor operating in restaurants and bars, retail and hotels.

Croda International buys Rewitec

Thu, 01/08/2019 The speciality chemicals group Croda International has moved to strengthen its position in the fast growing wind turbines market with the acquisition of the German company Rewitec, a developer of chemicals that increase the longevity of machines with many moving parts.

Dutch engineering firm Mammoet acquires ALE

Thu, 01/08/2019 Dutch engineering company Mammoet has acquired ALE, a specialist in services enabling the transportation of large, heavy loads. Mammoet believes the deal will enable it to offer a full range of heavy loading services around the world.

Cranswick buys Katsouris Brothers

Thu, 01/08/2019 Katsouris Brothers, a specialist in Mediterranean food products, has been acquired by Cranswick. The deal includes the company’s two operating facilities in Wembley, North London.

Ibstock acquires Longley Concrete for £14m

Thu, 01/08/2019 Longley Concrete, a precast concrete business with three manufacturing plants in the UK, has been bought by Ibstock for £14m. Ibstock reported revenue of £391.4m with adjusted EBITDA of £112.4m in 2018. Founded in 1947, Longley has turnover of £25m and 117 staff.

Camira Group acquires Luna Textiles

Thu, 01/08/2019 Camira Group has continued its expansion into the North American textiles market with the acquisition of Luna Textiles. Based in San Francisco, Luna designs textiles for the corporate, hospitality and healthcare markets.

Advent International agrees £4bn deal with Cobham

Thu, 01/08/2019 US private equity firm Advent International has reached an agreement to buy Cobham, in a deal which values the British aerospace company at £4bn. Cobham employs around 10,000 people and operates across four sections in the aerospace industry: avionics and surveillance, defence systems, mission systems and aviation services.

Liontrust to buy Neptune Investment Management

Thu, 01/08/2019 The specialist independent fund management group Liontrust Asset Management has announced it is to buy Neptune Investment Management. The £40m deal increases Liontrust's assets under management by £2.8bn to £17bn.

NWF Group buys Ribble Fuel Oils for £4.5m

Thu, 01/08/2019 Ribble Fuel Oils, a supplier of fuel to domestic and commercial customers across the North West of England, has been bought by NWF Group for £4.5m.

Persona Associates agrees to Gateley deal

Thu, 01/08/2019 Persona Associates, one of the UK’s leading land referencing consultancies, has been bought by Gateley plc. The deal will see the Persona team work closely with Gateley’s property consultancy business Gateley Hamer.

Stonegate to become UK's biggest pub chain

Thu, 01/08/2019 Stonegate Pub Company is to buy Ei Group in a deal worth £3bn. Ei is the largest owner of pubs in the UK with over 4,000 properties across England and Wales. The deal builds on recent deals for Be At One Group and Revolution Bars, and would make Stonegate the largest pub company in the UK.

GoCo Group buys Dragon's Den winner Look After My Bills

Thu, 01/08/2019 GoCo Group, owner of, has bought This Is The Big Deal (TITBD) for £12.5m. TITBD, which trades as Look After My Bills, is an energy comparison service which claims to guarantee “great energy deals forever”. It appeared on the BBC TV show Dragons’ Den in 2018 when the company founders, Henry de Zoete and Will Hodson, won the best ever deal in the history of the show, with Tej Lalvani and Jenny Campbell agreeing to invest £120,000 for 3% of the company.

Compass Group acquires Dine Contract Catering

Thu, 01/08/2019 Compass Group has acquired boutique foodservice operator Dine Contract Catering. It follows Compass Group’s agreement with Fazer Group to acquire Nordic food catering business Fazer Food Services for €475m (£424m) in May. Compass Group saw revenues of £23.24bn in the year to 30 September 2018, operates in around 45 countries, employs 600,000 people and serves more than 5.5 billion meals a year. Dine Contract Catering will continue to operate as a distinct brand.

July 2019

HRC Law bought by Brabners

Fri, 26/07/2019 The Manchester-based firm HRC Law has been acquired by Brabners. The deal is part of Brabners’ growth plans and strengthens its employment practice.

Japan Pulp and Paper pens deal for UK counterpart

Fri, 26/07/2019 RADMS Paper, owner of the paper merchant Premier Paper, has been taken over by the Japanese company Japan Pulp and Paper (JPP). The deal adds to JPP’s existing UK presence, most notably the publishing merchant Gould Paper Sales.

ETG seals deal for HK Holdings

Fri, 26/07/2019 Engineering Technology Group has acquired HK Holdings and all of its subsidiaries from Pexion Group. The deal allows ETG to offer a single-source solution for CNC machining, wire EDM machines, 3D printing and additive manufacturing.

Equistone Partners Europe acquires Heras from CRH

Fri, 26/07/2019 Equistone Partners Europe is to acquire security equipment firm Heras from CRH. The Doncaster-based business provides mobile and permanent perimeter protection systems, and last reported revenues of £196m. It has production facilities posted across Europe and employs more than 1,100 people.

TALENTStream acquires Strive Group

Fri, 26/07/2019 TALENTStream, a performance improvement specialist, has sealed a deal for Leeds-based creative design consultancy Strive Group. Based in Harrogate, TALENTStream has service divisions for outsourcing, training and development, creative and recruitment.

Walker Sime acquires WCP Associates

Fri, 26/07/2019 Manchester property services consultancy Walker Sime has acquired WCP Associates for an undisclosed sum. WCP is a chartered quantity surveying and project management business, which has helped deliver high profile recent projects such as Surf Snowdonia in the Conwy valley and the national network of OnSide Youth Zones.

Portmeirion buys Nambé for £9.5m

Fri, 26/07/2019 Pottery manufacturer Portmeirion, the owner of Wax Lyrical, has acquired Nambé for £9.5m. Founded in 1951, Nambé designs, sources and sells branded homewares. It last reported sales of £14.3m and EBITDA of £0.9m.

G3 Comms and Connect Managed Services merge

Fri, 26/07/2019 G3 Comms and Connect Managed Services have merged to create one of the UK's largest unified communications service providers, with combined revenues of £55m. Headquartered in London, Connect is a customer experience, unified communications and digital transformation provider, with partners that include Amazon Web Services, Avaya, Cisco, Genesys and Microsoft.

Engineering Technology Group acquires HK Holdings

Thu, 25/07/2019 Engineering Technology Group has acquired HK Holdings and all of its subsidiaries from Pexion Group. The deal allows ETG to offer a single-source solution for CNC machining, wire EDM machines, 3D printing and additive manufacturing

MBO completed at Thompson Brand Partners

Thu, 25/07/2019 Thompson Brand Partners has been acquired in a management buyout from founder and managing director Nick Ramshaw. The new management team is made up of Chris Skelton, Paul McGuigan and Rachel Cook and will be supported during the transition by Ramshaw, who stays on as MD.

Pennine and Videonations merge to create Avoira

Thu, 25/07/2019 Bury communications firm Pennine and Salford AV specialist Videonations have announced a merger. The combined firm will have £27m turnover and trade under the newly created Avoira brand, with a third business – Rocom – set to join in January.

Carr's Engineering buys rival for £9.6m

Thu, 25/07/2019 Engineering firm Carr's has bought rival business NW Total Engineered Solutions for £9.6m. Carr’s Engineering designs and manufactures bespoke equipment for key projects in the defence, environment, power and transport sectors, while NW Total specialises in nuclear defence, decommissioning, power generation and other highly regulated markets.

Ricardo expands energy and environment division in Australia

Thu, 25/07/2019 Engineering group Ricardo is to expand in Australia with the acquisition of environment, planning and infrastructure advisory firm PLC Consulting. The £5.36m deal will see PLC join Ricardo's Energy & Environment business, with MD and founder Deane Ellwood continuing to lead its 21 employees.

Orkla Food Ingredients seals sweet deal for toffee maker

Thu, 25/07/2019 Confection by Design, a Harrogate-based fudge and toffee manufacturer, has been bought by West Midlands-based Orkla Food Ingredients. Confection by Design last reported revenues of £5.7m with pre-tax profits of £1.6m. It distributes its products through Orchard Valley Foods, with 80% of its sales in the UK.

Bathstore bailed out by Homebase

Thu, 25/07/2019 The future of 154 employees has been secured with news that Bathstore has been acquired from administration by Homebase. The deal includes 44 stores, intellectual property and stock of

600 Group seals £7.8m deal for Control Micro Systems

Thu, 25/07/2019 Industrial engineering firm 600 Group has bought US business Control Micro Systems for £7.8m. CMS provides laser process machines and systems to blue-chip customers in North America and beyond.

Fintech startup Jaja takes over Bank of Ireland brands

Thu, 25/07/2019 UK fintech firm Jaja has announced a deal to acquire the Bank of Ireland's credit card business. The partnership will see Jaja take over the AA, Bank of Ireland UK and Post Office consumer credit card accounts for c. £530m. The acquisition forms part of Jaja’s strategy to scale its UK credit card business by working in partnership with other financial institutions and consumer brands. Jaja’s existing portfolio includes its own brand credit card and a point of sale financing solution with ASDA’s

Snowsports specialist Nuco Travel buys Erna Low

Thu, 25/07/2019 Snowsports specialist Nuco Travel has acquired independent ski tour operator Erna Low Travel. The deal, which comes just as Erna Low's long-term CEO Joanna Yellowlees-Bound retires, includes a broad selection of apartments and hotels in the French Alps.

Elite Group to acquire MWL Systems

Thu, 25/07/2019 Unified communications and IT services firm Elite Group has agreed to acquire MWL Systems. Founded in 1978, MWL is a Wrexham-based IT support and services business. It will provide Elite Group with a further 40 experienced IT staff

Enterprise Rent-A-Car acquires SHB Hire

Thu, 25/07/2019 Enterprise Rent-A-Car UK has agreed to acquire SHB Hire, a Romsey-based firm that operates a fleet of more than 18,500 commercial vehicles. In the financial year, ended 31 July 2018, Enterprise Rent-A-Car UK reported turnover of £876m with profit after tax of £13.3m. SHB Hire's revenues passed £120m in the last calendar year, with profit of £7.6m. The combined firm will have a fleet of more than 45,000 vehicles.

BBC and ITV agree to launch Netflix rival

Fri, 19/07/2019 The BBC and ITV have announced they are to launch a new streaming service, BritBox, towards the end of 2019. The service, which will cost £5.99 per month, will make thousands of hours of well known classic British TV available to view on demand, including shows like Gavin & Stacey, Benidorm and The Office. In addition BritBox will commission some original programming. ITV will initially own 90% of the joint venture but the BBC has the option to increase its stake to 25%. BritBox is the latest entrant into the competitive and fast changing streaming video on demand market, with Disney and Apple also preparing to launch services to challenge Netflix and Amazon. Netflix, the biggest streaming service in the world with more than 150m subscribers around the world, recently announced slower than expected growth figures as it struggles to cope with losing content (for example the Disney-owned Marvel TV shows such as Jessica Jones and Luke Cage) to rivals launching their own services.

Adams Morey acquired by West Midlands counterpart

Thu, 18/07/2019 Southampton-headquartered commercial vehicle dealer Adams Morey has been acquired by West Midlands counterpart Greenhous Group. Adams Morey has 300 staff and eight sites, and will continue to operate under its current name. Greenhous is one of the largest private businesses in the West Midlands, with 1,000 employees and revenues of £1.1bn in 2018.

Elta Group makes move for Smooth Air

Thu, 18/07/2019 International air movement, filtration and distribution specialist Elta Group has strengthened its position in Australasia with the acquisition of Smooth Air. A leading ventilation firm in New Zealand, Smooth Air has more than 85 staff located in Auckland, Christchurch and Wellington.

Enact backs MBO at Yorkshire engineering firm

Thu, 18/07/2019 Enact, the £30m SME fund managed by Endless, has backed the management buyout of Yorkshire engineering business Qualter Hall & Company from Waagner-Biro. Founded in 1860, Qualter Hall employs 120 people and is headquartered in Barnsley. Its landmark projects include the Scale Lane Bridge on the River Humber, a moving bascule bridge in Indonesia, and ongoing work on the Thames Barrier.

U Account bought by Morses Club

Thu, 18/07/2019 Digital current account provider U Account has been acquired by Morses Club. The deal includes U Account's technology and e-money banking platform, which Morses will utilise as it rolls out its online current account.

DMC Canotec buys United Carlton

Thu, 18/07/2019 United Carlton, a reseller of managed print services, has been bought by DMC Canotec. The acquisition is DMC Canotec’s fifth in six years and strengthens its position in the North of England. Established in 1991, DMC Canotec is a provider of managed print services and document management systems.

Smoothwall acquires Safeguard Software

Thu, 18/07/2019 Safeguard Software, a provider of record management software for schools, has been taken over by Smoothwall. Based in Leeds, Smoothwall provides web security software and services for business, education and government worldwide.

NorthEdge Capital backs MBO of Phoebus Software

Thu, 18/07/2019 The private equity firm NorthEdge Capital has backed the management buyout of Phoebus Software, a loans and management systems provider. The deal will see company founders Robert Lintonbon and Peter Pontefract leave the business.

Rotala becomes second biggest bus operator in Manchester

Thu, 18/07/2019 Bus operator First Manchester has announced plans to sell off 18 services to West Midlands-based Rotala. Including the Bolton bus depot, the £5.3m deal will see the transfer of 500 employees and makes Rotala the second biggest player in the Manchester market. First will be left with only the Oldham depot as its operating hub

Telford Homes to join Trammell Crow Company

Thu, 18/07/2019 Crow Company, a subsidiary of real estate giant CBRE, has announced plans to buy Telford Homes for £267.4m. Telford Homes has a current development portfolio with a total project cost of £1.32bn. The deal will see Telford accelerate growth in the build-to-rent / multi-family market in London. Telford generated £354m in revenue and £40m in pre-tax profit for the last financial year.

CPPIB sells Liberty Living Group for £1.4bn

Thu, 18/07/2019 The Unite Group has agreed to acquire Liberty Living Group for £1.4bn from CPPIB, the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board. Liberty Living is a portfolio of purpose-built student accommodation comprising over 24,000 beds, valued at £2.2bn as of 31 May 2019. The deal has been funded in part through a placement of over 26.3 million new shares, which is expected to raise c. £240m.

SysGroup acquires Hub Network

Thu, 18/07/2019 The managed IT service provider SysGroup has acquired Hub Network Services for £1.45m. Established in 1997, Hub is a managed connectivity and co-location services provider.

Sports Direct buys Game Digital for £52m

Thu, 18/07/2019 Mike Ashley’s Sports Direct has bought videogames retailer Game Digital for £52m. Game has struggled in recent years as videogames sales have moved to digital retailers such as Amazon and Steam, but Sports Direct believes that Game’s move into gaming arenas under the BELONG brand has growth potential.

Froneri seals sweet deal for Noga Ice Creams

Thu, 18/07/2019 Ice cream manufacturer Froneri has sealed a deal for Israeli firm Noga Ice Creams. Formed from the 2016 merger of R&R Ice Cream and Nestlé, Froneri is headquartered in Northallerton and reported revenues of £2.3bn in 2018. The acquisition of Noga from Nestlé-owned Osem Group means that all of Nestlé’s Europe, Middle East and North Africa ice cream businesses now sit within the Froneri Group.

Karro lands deal for Young's

Thu, 18/07/2019 Irish pork processor Karro Food Group has acquired Young's Seafood for an undisclosed sum, with Karro executive chair Di Walker taking the role of CEO. Karro and Young's will continue to operate independently as part of a larger group, with combined revenue of more than £1.2bn. The deal comes a year after Karro bought TS Bloor & Sons as part of its plans to grow its value-added pork production. Karro was itself acquired by Capvest in 2017. Young's employs around 1,700 people in Grimsby and runs several smaller sites in Scotland with about 550 staff.

Centrica acquires SmartWatt for £29m

Thu, 18/07/2019 Centrica has moved to strengthen its position in the USA market with the acquisition of SmartWatt for £29m. Headquartered in New York, SmartWatt is to be integrated into Centrica Business Solutions, a provider of integrated energy services.

Channel 4 to show Cricket World Cup Final as Sky gives up exclusive rights

Fri, 12/07/2019 Sky has responded to England reaching the Cricket World Cup Final for the first time since 1992 by making it free to view across the UK. Sky holds the exclusive rights to all ICC organised events, but pressure from fans, media and the players themselves has resulted in Sky reaching an agreement with Channel 4 which will see the broadcaster show the entire final on Sunday. This will be the first time live international cricket has been shown free on UK television since the 2005 Ashes.

Alexander Mann Solutions buys Karen HR

Thu, 11/07/2019 The outsourced recruitment specialist Alexander Mann Solutions has bought Canadian HR technology company Karen HR. The strategic acquisition includes Karen HR's 'cognitive recruiting assistant', which utilises AI to rank hundreds of CVs against jobs per second, and can be deployed to engage jobseekers via webchat or SMS. Alexander Mann partners with more than 100 blue-chip organisations and employs more than 4,500 people.

Thornton & Ross acquires five GSK brands

Thu, 11/07/2019 Thornton & Ross has expanded its consumer health business with the acquisition of several brands from GlaxoSmithKline. The deal includes skin care brands Oilatum, Savlon, Eurax and Polytar, as well as Tixylix, a range of paediatric cough medicines

Essentra expands components division

Thu, 11/07/2019 Plastic and fibre product supplier Essentra has bought US company Innovative Components. IC manufacturers pins, handles and knobs, and will be integrated into Essentra's components division. Essentra's components division reported revenue of £271.1m in 2018, up from £241.8m the year before. IC's 2018 revenues stood at £8.7m.

STV Productions cements deal with Primal Media

Thu, 11/07/2019 STV Productions has acquired a majority stake in content producer Primal Media, as it looks to develop new unscripted show formats. The news builds on a deal struck between the firms in February, to jointly develop and pitch large-scale entertainment formats for production in Scotland.

Brown Shipley buys NW Brown Co.

Thu, 11/07/2019 Brown Shipley has sealed a deal for fellow wealth manager NW Brown Co. The acquisition provides further scale and regional opportunities in the East of England, and increases the firm's total assets under management to almost £9bn.

Kartell UK buys shower tray maker JT

Thu, 11/07/2019 Leeds-based shower tray maker JT has been taken over by Kartell UK. Kartell is a global supplier of radiators and designer towel warmers. It has revenues in excess of £60m and employs more than 200 people. JT employs 125 staff and reported turnover of £13.7m in 2018.

Amber Beverage Group buys Cellar Trends

Thu, 11/07/2019 Amber Beverage Group has increased its stake in UK distributor Cellar Trends from 70% to 100%. Cellar Trends reported turnover of £37.5m in 2018.

Barratt Developments builds presence in Scotland

Thu, 11/07/2019 Barratt Developments has wholly acquired UK manufacturer Oregon Timber Frame for an undisclosed sum. Over the last three years, Barratt has built c. 5,500 homes using timber frame construction, and says it is committed to increasing the number of homes it builds with offsite manufacturing. The deal will complement the firm's operations in Scotland, where Oregon is based.

Art collector buys Sotheby's for £2.9bn

Fri, 05/07/2019 Billionaire entrepreneur and art collector Patrick Drahi has bought Sotheby’s. The £2.9bn deal returns the auction house to private ownership for the first time since 1988.

Webuyanycar website owner agrees to £1.9bn takeover

Fri, 05/07/2019 owner BCA Marketplace has agreed to a £1.9bn takeover offer from private equity firm TDR Capital. TDR's offer of 250p per share represents a c. 30% premium on BCA's share price, which had slipped by more than 10% in the year prior to the offer, sparking private equity interest. BCA floated in the spring of 2015 through a reverse takeover by Haversham Holdings, priced at 150p a share.

Bromford Industries buys Accrofab

Fri, 05/07/2019 Accrofab, a leading supplier of complex components for the global aerospace industry, has been acquired by Bromford Industries. Based in Derby, Accrofab employs 131 people and reported £9.8m turnover in 2018.

Fastflow Group and United Living announce merger

Fri, 05/07/2019 Fastflow Group and United Living have announced they are to merge. Fastflow Group specialises in providing essential services to the utilities and property sectors. United Living is a provider of new and refurbished homes across the UK. Both brands will operate independently following completion of the merger

Strategic Team Group buys Galliford Try

Fri, 05/07/2019The contracting and land-led developer Strategic Team Group has been bought by Galliford Try Partnerships. The deal, which will see Strategic change its name to Galliford Try Partnerships Yorkshire, is part of Galliford Try’s growth strategy in key regions around the country.

Newly Wed acquires Jigsaw Foods

Fri, 05/07/2019 The sauce and butter producer Jigsaw Foods has been acquired by the American food ingredients company Newly Wed Foods. The acquisition is to be used by Newly Wed Foods, which currently operates from three sites in the UK, to expand its global liquid products portfolio.

Macquarie Group acquires Premier Technical Services

Fri, 05/07/2019 Premier Technical Services Group (PTSG) has been acquired by Macquarie Group, a provider of specialist investment banking and financial services, in a deal worth £265.3m. PTSG, founded in 2007, is a provider of specialist services to several niche markets in the UK.

WPP puts The Farm Group out to pasture

Fri, 05/07/2019 WPP has announced the sale of its majority stake in The Farm Group, the UK’s largest provider of post-production services, to LA-based Picture Shop. The deal is an extension of WPP’s new strategy, agreed in December 2018, to streamline its operations and dispose of non-core assets