NBGI Private Equity, the London-based private equity house, has backed the acquisition of Walker Hamill from the Marlborough International Group. Walker Hamill is a leading recruitment agency specialising in the placement of middle and senior management at financial service businesses, with offices in London, Sydney and Melbourne, Australia.
The purchase price for Walker Hamill is £6.7m. On completion of the deal, NBGI will control 55 per cent of the company, with management accounting for the remainder. The MBO was led by joint managing directors David Craig and Guy Townsend.
Commenting on the deal, Mark Owen, director at NBGI, said: “NBGI’s expertise in the business services sector made this a very attractive deal for the firm. We believe that the market is likely to pick up in the near future. Given that this MBO is taking place in a deflated market, we will be well-positioned to grow the company when we see an upturn.”
The deal was structured and arranged by KPMG Corporate Finance. Other advisers to the deal were Pinsent Curtis Biddle, who advised NBGI and the newco, BDO Stoy Hayward, CIL and Speechly Bircham. Barclays Bank plc has provided working capital facilities for the newco.
NBGI Private Equity invests in established small to mid-sized ‘traditional economy’ businesses across the UK and continental Europe. The team currently manages a E100m fund which was established in 2000. This is NBGI’s fifth investment. Investments to date have included Nationwide Autocentres and easyCar. Around one third of the fund has so far been invested.