Aberdeen Growth Capital does two deals in two days

Aberdeen Asset Management Growth Capital is using its local expertise to purchase a North Sea oil industry supplies company for approximately £15 million. Separately it is also backing a funeral services company.

Aberdeen Asset Management Growth Capital has invested £3.9 million (€5.7million $7.7 million) in a £15 million buyout of Aberdeen Tool Rental, a company that provides tools, supplies and support services to the UK offshore oil and gas industry.

Royal Bank of Scotland is providing acquisition funding, working capital and on-going capital expenditure facilities.

The buyout firm has also invested in a Nottingham-based funeral services business.

Aberdeen Tool Rental has a turnover of about £12 million (€17.7 million; €23.7 million) and employs 85 people.

Aberdeen is replacing ATR’s management with a team led by Robert Skidmore, who managed buildings supplies business Wolseley with 3i. He is joined by Keith Moorhouse who has pedigree in the industrial supplies business with BSS Group but has no previous buy-in experience.

The team is aiming to double turnover in the next 3 years and increase the workforce through expansion in the north east of England, the Caspian and the Far East.

Jock Gardiner, investment director at Aberdeen Asset Management Growth Capital, said the buyout firm’s local knowledge of North Sea oil avoided a costly auction as there was a greater degree of trust between the old and new managements.

The old management founded ATR in 1994 and according to Gardiner will remain as consultants for some time to ensure ‘a significant degree of continuity’.

Aberdeen has also deployed £5 million in a deal backing Nottingham-based Funeral Services Partnership. The firm has already acquired two funeral services businesses based in the midlands and the south of England.

Heading the new acquisition is Philip Greenfield, the former founder of the Fairways Funeral business, which he grew to manage 6,000 funerals per year and was sold to the Co-operative Group in 2006.

Aberdeen Asset Management Growth Capital focuses on providing equity funding for smaller UK companies valued at up to £10 million. It invests client funds, including venture capital trusts, investment trusts and specialist investment companies.