NeedHelp, a home improvement services marketplace, has been taken over by Kingfisher, owner of B&Q and Screwfix. Kingfisher recently announced it was making becoming a “mobile-first customer experience” a priority.
The magazine publisher Future has agreed a £594m deal to buy GoCo Group, owner of the price comparison website GoCompare. Future, which publishes some of the UK’s best known magazine brands, believes the deal will enable to establish a global specialist media platform. GoCompare is well known to UK consumers through its advertising campaigns featuring a fictional Italian tenor called Gio Compario.
The private equity firms TowerBrook and Warburg Pincus have agreed to buy the AA for £219m. The deal will see investment in critical areas such as IT transformation and a renewed focus on the company’s insurance business.
The IT provider Calligo has continued to expand its operations into the UK with the acquisition of Network Integrity Services (NIS), an IT managed services provider which specialises in managed IT, cloud and security services. NIS has offices in Manchester, Birmingham, Leicester and Hemel Hempstead.
The American company Allied Universal has announced it is to buy G4S for £3.8bn. The combined security services company will employ 750,000 people around the world.
The private equity firm Endless has bought the bread brand Hovis. Headquartered in High Wycombe, Hovis operates eight bakery sites, its own flour mill and a distribution network which covers the UK.
Iberchem, a Spanish fragrances and flavours specialist, has been taken over by Croda International. The £736m deal strengthens Croda’s personal care and home care businesses and enables it to move into faster growing core consumer markets.
Salesforce is to buy the workplace communications platform Slack for $27.7bn. The deal is seen as a way for Salesforce to better compete with Microsoft. Around 142,000 businesses currently use Slack, with the service having 12 million daily users in 2019.
Arcadia has gone into administration. The owner of high street fashion brands Topshop, Topman, Burton, Dorothy Perkins, Evans, Miss Selfridge and Wallis employs around 13,000 people at 444 sites across the UK. Administrators are seeking buyers for the business.
The department store chain Debenhams is to be liquidated with the loss of up to 13,000 jobs. Hopes of finding a buyer for the company disappeared when the only bidder JD Sports withdrew its interest. Debenhams has been struggling for many years and the global pandemic has put the final nail in the coffin of the business which can trace its history back 242 years.