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Lyceum backs facilities management business

The £32.2m investment in the facilities management division of AIM-listed Johnson Service Group is the second deal of Lyceum’s third fund, which closed on £330m at the end of last year.

Lyceum Capital has acquired SGP Property & Facilities Management, the facilities management division of AIM-listed Johnson Service Group, for £32.2 million (€37 million, $49 million).  

SGP provides facilities and property services to clients across the healthcare, education, corporate and retail sectors, including to coffee chain Costa Coffee.  

“Johnson Service Group decided SGP was non-core. We had been speaking to the subsidiary of the company for a couple of years. There was a limited process run by PwC,” Jeremy Hand, Lyceum’s founding partner, told Private Equity International. 

Three UK-based private equity firms were invited to look at the company, but the main interest came from trade [buyers].  

The debt-equity split was 50-50 and Lyceum worked with HSBC on this deal, Hand said.  

Lyceum has backed the current management team and plans to help build SGP’s market presence and capability both organically and through targeted acquisitions, Hand said. Hand will also join the company’s board.

Gerry Higgins, an industrial partner at Lyceum, has been appointed chairman and will lead the management team together with Martin Holt, who will become chief executive of SGP. 

The acquisition of SGP marks the second deal from Lyceum’s third fund, which closed at the end of last year on £330 million. Last June, Lyceum backed CuroCare, a specialist provider of residential care. 

It is understood Lyceum’s third fund had a high re-up rate, although some existing investors had less firepower than before and had to reduce their allocation. Lyceum did however attract new investors, which meant the firm exceeded its £275 million target. It is understood the firm plans to do approximately 12 investments from this fund. 

Lyceum declined to comment on the fundraising. 

The vehicle is the largest fund Lyceum has raised to date. Lyceum Capital Fund II, a 2008 vintage, raised £255 million, the same amount as its predecessor, Lyceum Capital I, according to PEI’s Research and Analytics division.

Its LPs include pension funds, insurance companies, asset managers and mutuals, funds of funds, banks and private family offices. Current investors include AlpInvest, AP2, AXA Private Equity and AXA Sun Life, Danske Private Equity, European Investment Fund, F&C, GIMV, Kuwait Investment Office, Lexington, Regents of the University of California, Robeco, Thrivent and clients of SCM Strategic Capital Management, the firm said on its website.