Advent lands first UK PTP since credit crunch(4)

European buyout firm Advent International has bought domestic goods insurer Domestic & General in one of the first public to private deals since problems in the debt markets began.

Advent International has bought Domestic & General for £524 million ($1.1 billion, €774 million).

Advent’s acquisition was one of the few take-privates worldwide since the problems in the debt markets began in July and the first in the UK. US buyout firm The Blackstone Group bought partially listed clothing exporter Gokaldas last month for $165 million, although only 20 percent of the Indian company was held by public shareholders. 

The last UK public to private deal was Duke Street Capital’s acquisition of dentist Oasis Healthcare, which it bid for in July, although the bid only went unconditional in August.

Advent will pay £14.25 per share a 25.7 percent premium over the company’s share price in May, when the company first revealed there was an interested bidder.

Domestic & General provides insurance and warranties for electrical domestic goods.

John Singer, chairman of Advent, said in a statement the firm would pursue an expansion programme for the company in the UK and internationally.

Advent managed to see off trade buyer Homeserve, an emergency call out and repair service, which pulled out of the bidding last week, according to news agency Reuters.

Advent has been a consistent investor in the financial services sector. It has bought several companies in the sector this year including share registration business Lloyds Registrars for £550 million in May. It has also invested in UK recruitment firm the Alexander Mann Group, financial PR firm Financial Dynamics and US benefits firm WageWorks.