FRP has advised the shareholders of a leading medical equipment auctioneer on the sale of a stake to private equity investors, WestCountry Capital and Bestport Private Equity, in a deal that not only realises value for the founders but supports the business’ future growth.
Headquartered in Wiltshire, Hilditch Group is the UK’s leading specialist in the management, auction, recycling and disposal of used medical equipment.
The business was founded in 1990 by Mike and Nicky Hilditch who, over the past 30 years have built strong relationships with more than 90 per cent of NHS Hospital Trusts in the UK and established the business as the market leader. The business helps organisations to identify surplus equipment and then sell it in order to maximise returns, whether by auction, private treaty or online. It also provides its clients with services such as site clearance, maintenance and testing, secure data cleansing and asset management services. More recently the business has established itself in Germany, France and Spain.
The deal was led by the Corporate Finance team in Bristol and saw Hilditch Group’s founders, Mike and Nicky Hilditch, secure investment from WestCountry Capital and Bestport Private Equity. Following the deal, Mike and Nicky will remain with the business as it continues its growth trajectory.
Mark Naughton, Corporate Finance Partner said: “Hilditch Group is a true pioneer that has established an industry-leading reputation through its commitment to quality and client service over the past 30 years. With the support of WestCountry Capital and Bestport Private Equity, the business now has the financial backing it needs to continue to invest and the management team can embark on the next phase of their growth strategy. We wish them the best of luck with the next phase and look forward to following their growth journey.”
Mike Hilditch, said: “Deciding to sell a stake in a business that you have built up over 30 years is a very difficult decision to make – it is intrusive and involves a huge amount of work. However, Mark and Alex from FRP have eased us through the process, from the compilation of the Information Memorandum through to the negotiations with the private equity investors and successful completion of the transaction they have done a terrific job and my business partner and I would heartily recommend them.”
Ashley Levinson, from WestCountry Capital, said: “Being WestCountry Capital’s first transaction we were keen to source a high-quality deal from a reputable advisory firm and that is exactly what FRP Advisory brought to the table. There are always challenges in transactions like this and team at FRP were adept at clearing any hurdles along the way”.
The team at FRP was led by Corporate Finance Partner Mark Naughton, with support from Associate Director Alex Sargeant and Manager Freddie James.
Legal advice was provided to Mike and Nicky by Thrings, led by Partner John Richardson in Bristol. Tax advice to the founders was provided by Haines Watts.
Advisors to WestCountry Capital and Bestport were Bishop Fleming (Due Diligence) and Ashfords (Legal).