Lloyds TSB and Bridgepoint create major aerospace supplier

The private equity firms have merged Trim Engineering Group with Mayflower Technical Services to create Mayflower Aerospace and Rail Systems.

Lloyd’s TSB Development Capital (LDC) and Bridgepoint Capital have teamed up to acquire Trim Engineering Group, a UK manufacturer of aerospace components, from US company Compass Aerospace Corp. And in a simultaneous deal, Trim has been merged with Mayflower Technical Services, an aerospace and automotive design consultancy. Royal Bank of Scotland, London, structured a debt package for the £55m transaction.

Speaking about the new group, which will be called Mayflower Aerospace and Rail Systems Limited (MAR), LDC's Jonathan Simm said: “The merger of these two companies and the significant capital expenditure that is planned, will enable MAR to emerge as a new tier 1 supplier to the aerospace industry. This will enable it to play a leading role in the major aerospace programmes that are forecast for the next 10 years.”

The combined business will have a turnover of approximately £70m in 2001 and will be one of the largest UK aerospace component manufacturers employing 1,000 staff.

Martin Dunn of Bridgepoint Capital said that increasingly aerospace OEMs (Owner equipment manufacturers) are looking to eliminate the intermediate tendering step in the design process, preferring to work with suppliers who can offer 'design to manufacture'services.

“The merger of Trim and MTS will create one of the largest UK aerospace component manufacturers with a comprehensive product and service offering at a time when underlying growth in demand for aircraft is set to increase,” he said.

Trim Engineering was set up in the early 1950s and is based in Poole, UK. It manufactures a range of aerospace structural parts including wing components, radar housings, engine casings and mountings for customers such as BAe Systems, Airbus, and Shorts (Bombardier).