Close Brothers backs management buyout of assayers

Close Brothers Private Equity has made its eighth investment from its latest fund, through the management buyout of the assayers arm of commodity inspectors Alex Stewart.

Close Brothers Private Equity has backed the management buyout of Alex Stewart (Assayers), part of commodity inspectors the Alex Stewart Group, for an undisclosed amount. 

Alex Stewart (Assayers): inspectors for the metals industry

Andrew Nelson, Close Brothers Private Equity, told PrivateEquityOnline that the deal has come in at the smaller end of the company’s range.  Close Brothers Private Equity invests in companies with a value between £20 million and £120 million.

Alex Stewart (Assayers) inspects materials for the mining and exploration, metals and minerals and recycling industries, and has franchises in more than 50 countries. 

KPMG provided financial due diligence, tax and corporate finance services to Close Brothers Private Equity while mining and metal industry consultants Brook Hunt and coal industry analysts McCloskey Coal performed commercial due diligence.  The lawyers were Berwin Leighton PaisnerBarclays provided the debt.

Close Brothers Private Equity is backing a management team led by managing director John Notman-Watt

Alex Stewart (Assayers) is Close Brothers Private Equity’s eighth investment from Fund VII, following investments in Aqualisa, Waltons, CanDu, and Rosemont Pharmaceuticals.

Last month Close Brothers Private Equity sold chemicals manufacturer Minova to commercial explosives supplier Orica, an Australian quoted company, for £357 million.

In August Close Brothers Private Equity bought Rosemont Pharmaceuticals, a developer and manufacturer of oral liquid medicines, from US biotechnology company Savient Pharmaceuticals for $176m (£93m).

Close Brothers Private Equity was established in 1984 and has funds under management of £1 billion.  It focuses on investment in business support services, consumer products, leisure, specialist industrials and transport and distribution.