Bridgepoint drops Oyez Staker exit

Bridgepoint plans to keep the legal stationer on its books after a £90m secondary sale fell through.

Bridgepoint Capital, the European private equity house, is no longer looking to progress with the planned sale of Oyez Staker, the legal and corporate stationary business.

According to a source familiar with the situation, Bridgepoint dropped plans to sell the business after receiving an offer from fellow private equity house ECI Ventures, which subsequently withdrew from the deal.

Bridgepoint had been looking to raise £90m from the sale, a number that ECI was not comfortable with, the source said. Discomfort over the state of Oyez Staker’s industry sector was a factor in ECI’s decision, the source added.  

ECI, which manages £350m of assets, typically looks to invest between £5m and £25m of equity in buyouts, turnarounds and refinancings. A spokesperson at ECI declined to comment.

Bridgepoint bought Oyez in 1993 and invested additional capital in 2000 when the company acquired its UK rival Stat Plus in a public-to-private transaction. In the six months to 28 February 2002, Oyez recorded a 20 per cent sales increase to £65.3m and a £5.1m profit.

According to the source, Bridgepoint has no plans to sell the business unless a bidder offers “the right price”, particularly in light of Oyez’s recent performance. 

Oyez was put up for sale in October 2001.