M&A Advisory

CLC Group

Adviser to refurbishment, electrical and fire protection services provider CLC Group Limited, on the sale to H.I.G. Capital.

The deal

A leading provider of property and asset refurbishment has been acquired by H.I.G Capital.

FRP Corporate Finance has advised the shareholders of CLC Group Limited (CLC), a leading UK provider of property and asset refurbishment, on the sale of the group by its owners, the Armitage Family Trust and management shareholders, to global alternative investment firm H.I.G. Capital LLC (H.I.G.). The Armitage Family Trust and CLC management will reinvest in the group alongside H.I.G.

CLC provides refurbishment, electrical, and fire protection services to clients in the social housing, local government, defence, hospitality, and utilities end-markets. Operating 15 branches across the UK, with a head office in Southampton, the business has developed an exceptionally strong reputation for service delivery and has delivered unbroken, organic growth for over two decades.

The shareholders at CLC appointed FRP Corporate Finance as lead sell-side advisers. The team, which was jointly led by Partner Simon Davies and Partner Darren Miller, and supported by Director Richard Boyden and Senior Manager Paul Cashman, gained significant levels of interest from both potential trade and private equity buyers.

A deal was agreed with H.I.G., after the firm recognised the group’s strong market position and reputation, its track record of profitable growth, and the opportunity for further expansion into new geographical areas and complementary services, fuelled by factors such as decarbonisation efforts and increasing property compliance regulations.

Darren Miller, FRP Corporate Finance Partner, said: “Since its foundation in 1969, CLC has established an exceptional reputation for delivering a high quality and dependable service to its clients, and this has been reflected in almost continuous growth. It has been a privilege advising shareholders and the management team to bring this transaction to a successful completion.”

Peter Armitage, Non-Executive Chairman of CLC, remarked: “I had the opportunity to invest in CLC over 42 years ago when I was young and ambitious and prepared to put our house on the line to acquire a 20% stake in what was a relatively small company with a turnover of a few million pounds. Over the years since then, my family and I have taken every opportunity, when it became available, to increase that investment in, and commitment to, CLC. We have been extremely fortunate that the small business in which we invested has become the large successful business that it is today.  I have enjoyed every minute of my involvement with CLC, and I am delighted that H.I.G. has come on board to support the group’s next phase of growth and help CLC take advantage of the growth opportunities in front of it.”

Simon Reeve, Finance Director at CLC, commented: “I was extremely fortunate to have Darren and Simon from FRP Corporate Finance as part of the team to advise and support through the sale process. They worked tirelessly to help to attain the shareholders’ goals, and managed to maintain a strategic view whilst simultaneously keeping on top of the minutiae of the deal.  The management team is very excited to have the opportunity to work with H.I.G. to seek out new opportunities for growth, and begin the next stage of the CLC journey.”

John Harper, Managing Director of H.I.G. in London, said: “The property refurbishment market is set for significant investment in the coming decade. We are excited to partner with CLC’s highly experienced management team to build on their success to date through further service and geographic expansion, as well as add-on acquisitions.”

The shareholders and management were provided legal advice by Shoosmiths, led by Stephen Porter, Lisa Sigalet and Kiran Dhesi. Vendor financial due diligence was provided by Nick Williams and Colin Ferguson from RSM. The shareholder’s tax advisors were Alan Gasser and Emma Halton from PwC.

H.I.G.’s investment was led by John Harper, Adam Taylor, Elliott Robinson, William Grant, Scott Menzel and Philippe de Limburg Stirum. H.I.G was advised by Goodwins (Legal), Alvarez & Marsal (Financial Due Diligence), OC&C and Hakluyt (Commercial Due Diligence), AON (Insurance) and Buck (Pensions). Bank Debt was provided by Tikehau.

Deal summary

Date:

June 2023

Sector:

Business services

Deal type:

Selling a business

Deal size:

Undisclosed

Since its foundation in 1969, CLC has established an exceptional reputation for delivering a high quality and dependable service to its clients, and this has been reflected in almost continuous growth. It has been a privilege advising shareholders and the management team to bring this transaction to a successful completion. Darren Miller Corporate Finance

Related team

Simon Davies

Simon Davies

  • Partner
  • Corporate Finance
  • Reading, London West End

Darren Miller

Darren Miller

  • Partner
  • Corporate Finance
  • Reading

Richard Boyden

Richard Boyden

  • Director
  • Corporate Finance
  • Reading