Corporate finance team

Ryecroft Glenton Corporate Finance delivers its most successful year to date and predicts a strong 2018

Ryecroft Glenton Corporate Finance (RGCF) has delivered its most successful year to date, based on the number and size of transactions the firm has advised on.

In 2017 the mid-market Corporate Finance advisory practice, which is part of Newcastle-based advisory firm, Ryecroft Glenton, advised on two dozen transactions.

The majority of the transactions the firm has advised on during 2017 have involved strategic buyers from both the UK and overseas, including countries such as Japan and Ireland, along with a number of Private Equity investors.

Looking forward to 2018, RGCF is currently sporting a strong pipeline of both buy and sell side transactions, which will enable the firm to continue to support a number of large, privately-owned and listed businesses looking to develop their existing operations, via strategic acquisitions, whilst also advising on regional, national and international disposal mandates, including MBOs.

During the past twelve months RGCF has advised on a number of cross-border transactions, which recently included the sale of 75 percent of one of the UK’s largest industrial recruitment businesses, gap personnel, to Japanese-listed Trust Tech Inc, for £20.1 million.  RGCF is continuing to focus on growing its international reach and its current clients include companies located in Australia and Japan.

The level of transactions completed by RGCF during 2017 mirrors the growing M&A activity in the UK with overseas listed and privately-owned organisations targeting expansion through the making of strategic acquisitions.

This included the £15m sale of Birmingham-based IT consultancy, Crimson Ltd to AIM-listed technology and outsourcing giant, Harvey Nash Group plc in September 2017, with RGCF advising Crimson Ltd.

During September, RGCF also advised on the sale of Wallsend based offshore, marine and engineering specialist, Lift-Rite Group to Benbecula Subsea Services Ltd, a business led by Ally MacDonald, former CEO of Wellstream and MD of Technip Umbilicals and current Chairman of Tekmar Energy.

The firm has advised on a number of MBOs during the year including the acquisition of technology company, DP Connect Ltd by its incumbent MD, Aidan Anglin, as well as advising on the sale of specialist driving recruitment business, Driving Force to its management team.

RGCF predicts the MBO trend will continue as entrepreneurial management teams have the opportunity to access a growing suite of funding options from both high street and challenger banks, as well as asset-based lenders.

In addition, RGCF believes that Private Equity will continue to have a strong influence on the MBO market with PE houses keen to support aspirational, proven and experienced management teams with buying out their businesses from the existing shareholders, whilst securing growth and development capital.

A good example of such a business is Newcastle-based Van Mildert, the UK’s fastest growing tenant referencing and insurance provider, which received significant Private Equity investment earlier this year from London-based Private Equity house, Aldington Capital, with RGCF advising Van Mildert on the transaction.

Van Mildert has used the investment to help accelerate its core objective of ensuring that its letting agent clients and software partners emerge as clear industry winners in an ever-changing and challenging market.

It also enabled one of Van Mildert’s co-founders, Richard Hammond, to exit the business, leaving Christian Balshen, as Sales Director, with a significant shareholding in the business, alongside Aldington Capital.

2018 will also mark a significant milestone for RGCF as it benefits from the upcoming rebrand of Ryecroft Glenton, along with the continued development of its OutsourcedFD services, which will enable the firm to present its advisory services and expertise to a larger, regional, national and international client base.

Carl Swansbury, partner at Ryecroft Glenton Corporate Finance and Insiders 2017 Young Dealmaker of the Year, said: “This has been a landmark year for Ryecroft Glenton Corporate Finance as we continue to build a strong, national, mid-market CF practice.

“Although we are not the largest corporate finance house in the market, based on head count, we have advised on a large number of high value transactions across a range of sectors during 2017 that has enabled us to establish a strong reputation in the North East and, increasingly, nationally and internationally.

“Despite the uncertainty in the economy surrounding Brexit, there remains a positive interest in UK companies from overseas trade buyers and PE investors.  This may be influenced by the lower value of sterling, however, it is also down to the attractiveness of fast-growth, ambitious UK businesses that offer valuable investment opportunities.”

Carl added: “We are confident 2018 will continue to deliver positive developments for RGCF.  We have a strong and growing team, with the recent appointment of David Nixon and Adam Cassidy, along with a full pipeline of transactions and we believe sectors such as technology, human capital, financial services, engineering and professional services, all of which we know well, will be highly-active from an M&A perspective in 2018.”

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