Gala Coral takes Walker to heart

Permira, Cinven and Candover, the three buyout firms behind the gaming company Gala Coral, have set the blueprint for compliance with Sir David Walker’s report on disclosure and transparency.

The international gaming business Gala Coral is the first private equity-backed business to issue a Walker-compliant annual report, it said in a statement. Walker Committee recommendations call for transparent and timely information about a company’s performance.

Neil Goulden, chief executive of the Gala Coral Group, highlighted his company’s 10.6 percent increase in profits in a challenging year.

He said: “We have responded quickly to the Walker Committee recommendations for greater transparency and disclosure. Gala Coral and its private equity investors, Candover, Cinven and Permira, are very pleased to be leading the way in terms of reporting and disclosure.”

A spokeswoman for the British Venture Capital Association said the UK trade association was delighted with its members’ response. She said: “The increase in disclosure at the general partner and portfolio company level and the increase in reporting will further demonstrate to a broader group of stakeholders the contribution private equity makes to the wider economy.”

The news will be a welcome boost for Sir David Walker, who received a mauling at the hands of the UK Treasury Select Committee earlier this week.
Walker defended his report, saying firms will “all commit to it” or attract “the wrath” of the committee and of parliament.