LDC tops growth charts

Lloyds’ captive private equity unit lays claim to 10 of Britain’s 100 fastest growing companies, with other lower mid-market firms also faring well in the ranking of a recent study.

A recent study found 10 of Britain’s 100 fastest growing private equity-backed companies are sponsored by LDC, the captive private equity group formerly known as Lloyds Development Capital.
The Sunday Times Deloitte Buyout Track 100, which ranks British private equity-backed companies in the mid-market by profit growth over the last two years, found LDC to feature more frequently than any other financial sponsor. LDC portfolio companies such as St. Tropez, which supplies fake tanning products, and InterContinental Brands, which manufactures beverages such as Vodkat Schnappes and St. Helier Pear Cider, featured at number 77 and number 65 on the list respectively.
The study will be welcomed by executives at LDC and its parent company, Lloyds Banking Group, which last year faced criticism that their private equity activity was benefiting from a government bailout. LDC was able to take advantage of its parent’s healthy balance sheet – healthy in large part due to a £17 billion (€18.9 billion; $28.4 billion) government bailout of the bank – to complete three times more deals in the UK market in the first nine months of the year than any of its rivals. “Was a private equity unit supposed to benefit from the bailout?” asked a headline of an article in the Times newspaper at the time.
“What we are doing fits absolutely with what the bank expects us to do,” LDC managing director Peter Brooks told PEI in November last year, “and presumably also what the government would expect us to do.”
The second most prevalent financial sponsor to feature in the Buyout Track 100 is Inflexion Private Equity, which has backed five of the fastest growing companies.
3i, Gresham Private Equity and Hg Capital all lay claim to four each.