Clients

Below is an example of just a few of the clients we have expertly dealt with through to successful completion. You can also read what they have to say about our company sale service and more details on the sale transaction.

The Railway Engineering Co

TRE is a specialist provider of advanced control systems and services to the railway industry, sold to Strainstall Group, who is an engineering business, specialising in load measurement and sensor-based safety technology.

Deal summary Client review

Company background

Founded in 2000 by three leading senior rail control specialists, TRE is a specialist provider of complex, advanced control systems and services to the rail industry. Their capabilities in modelling, software development and simulation give them a unique ability to enable clients to trial solutions before committing them to the live environment. Network Rail has used TRE’s signaller training and assessment system, TRESIM, extensively at signalling centres throughout its network and has recently committed to the use of its Signaller Assistant system at several signalling centres on the west coast main line. TRE’s system development skills have also been widely employed by a number of major UK signalling system suppliers.

Deal background

Strainstall Group is a broad-based engineering business, specialising in load measurement and sensor-based safety technology, with over 40 years experience in a wide range of industries. Market sectors include marine, offshore, transport, power, civil, rail and construction on a worldwide basis. Within the rail industry, Strainstall supply sensors and systems to monitor a complex array of parameters covering points, track dynamics, bridges and tunnels and the wheel-rail interface. The acquisition of TRE will further broaden the group’s rail interests.

Peter Cross
Managing Director, The Railway Engineering Company Limited

When considering appointing advisors to the proposed sale, what were your main considerations and concerns?
That the advisors would find us the best price. We were concerned about finding the right purchaser that would support and run the company after we departed.

What were the determining points in deciding to appoint advisors?
A previous sale, for which we did not use advisors, went wrong at the last minute, leaving us with a large legal bill. We therefore decided to use advisers for this sale.

Do you feel that Alaris was able to give access to different types of purchaser?
Yes.

Overall, what was the level of responsiveness from your advisors?
Brilliant.

Do you feel that negotiations were managed to your satisfaction?
Yes very much so. The executive negotiated exceptionally well.

After the Heads of Agreement stage of the transaction was reached, do you feel that the advisers continued to contribute to the sale process?
Alaris was still very much involved after heads and came to all meetings with the lawyers.

Overall, were there any key areas where you feel your advisors particularly contributed to the transaction?
Alaris had a terrific understanding of the purchaser and how far they would go, ensuring us the best deal possible.

In retrospect, would you use advisors again to assist in the sale of a business?
Yes.

Would you consider recommending us to other business owners considering a sale of their business?
Yes – absolutely

Are there any additional points that you would like to make regarding your experience of working with us?
Our executive was exceptional. Pleasant, calm but a great negotiator.

“We were delighted with the professional way in which Alaris handled the sale process and particularly with their creative approach to identifying potential acquirers”

Toolcom Supplies

Toolcom was a leading supplier of automotive and engineering supplies, specialising in the PSV, HGV, local authority, printing and utilities markets, sold to Barnes Group (USA).

Deal summary Client review

Company background

Founded in 1976, Toolcom Supplies Ltd is a high quality customer-focused company at the forefront of the engineering & automotive supplies, hand & power tools, janitorial, PPE and workshop consumable markets throughout the UK from its warehouses in Fife, Scotland.
As specialists to the PSV, HGV, local authority, printing and utilities markets, Toolcom Supplies Ltd provides and develops a diverse range of products and services to meet new industry developments. Its continuing success has seen the company expand 5-fold since 1995, increasingly acting as a “one-stop-shop” for its customers.
The Company was recently voted by the line operational managers of one of its larger customers as their No.1 supplier, underlining the strength of reputation that the Company has achieved.

Deal background

The business was acquired by Barnes Group (USA).

Fraser Greenwood
Chairman, Toolcom Supplies Limited

When considering appointing advisors to the proposed sale, what were your main considerations and concerns?
Their ability to do the job and the professionalism of the company. We were concerned about choosing advisors who were unable to do the job.

What were the determining points in deciding to appoint advisors?
Professional approach and confidence that they could do the job

Overall, what was the level of responsiveness from your advisors?
Very good. Always felt that Alaris was there to help

Do you feel that negotiations were managed to your satisfaction?
Yes.

After the Heads of Agreement stage of the transaction was reached, do you feel that the advisors continued to contribute to the sale process?
We were always confident that they were there to answer any queries.

Overall, where would you say that you would have appreciated more involvement from Alaris in the transaction?
They were there if needed

In retrospect, would you use advisors again to assist in the sale of a business?
Yes.

Would you consider recommending us to other business owners considering a sale of their business?
Yes.

Are there any additional points that you would like to make regarding your experience of working with us?
We were very impressed with their level of professionalism throughout our dealings.

Montagu Private Equity

Provider of services and products to the UK dispensing Doctor market, sold to Sinclair Pharma, who are focused on sourcing and acquiring innovative products, registration and commercialisation of those products.

Deal summary Client review

Company background

Ashbourne Pharmaceuticals is a UK pharmaceutical sales and marketing business, which specialises in delivering co-promotional services and products to the UK Dispensing Doctor market.
Ashbourne has served the Dispensing Doctor market for some 20 years and as a result is the leading specialist provider of sales and marketing services in this market. The Ashbourne brand is well-established and this is a key factor in its success in the Dispensing Doctor market.

Deal background

Sinclair Pharma plc is an AIM-quoted, international specialty pharmaceutical company focused on the sourcing and acquisition of innovative products, registration and commercialisation of those products. Sinclair currently focuses on dermatology, oral health and ophthalmology. Sinclair has a global network of marketing partners in 60 countries. The company is also expanding its own sales and marketing capacity, with operations already present in France, Italy, Spain and Portugal. Ashbourne is an ideal platform investment for developing the UK sales presence of Sinclair Pharma plc.

Tom Challoner
Director, Montagu Private Equity

When considering appointing advisors to the proposed sale, what were your main considerations and concerns?
That we worked with someone we knew and who was capable of delivering. That the size of the advisors matched the size of the deal and they were able to manage the fragile nature of the deal

After the Heads of Agreement stage of the transaction was reached, do you feel that the advisors continued to contribute to the sale process?
Yes most definitely

Overall, were there any key areas where you feel your advisors particularly contributed to the transaction?
Alaris were very helpful in all areas and in particular in managing the team

In retrospect, would you use advisors again to assist in the sale of a business?
Yes.

Would you consider recommending us to other business owners considering a sale of their business?
Yes.

Are there any additional points that you would like to make regarding your experience of working with Alaris?
We feel we did very well with a difficult mandate in somewhat difficult circumstances

Tom Chaloner of Montagu Private Equity said: “We were impressed with the deal process managed by Alaris. In particular the hands-on support and guidance provided by Alaris to the management team which led to a successful sale outcome. We would recommend Alaris”.
Dr Huw Jones, Non-Executive Chairman of Ashbourne said: “Alaris provided us with a persistent team of highly personable people with whom we enjoyed working. Their greatest strengths are their persistence and excellent negotiation skills.”

Maylon Lestrange

An over 40yrs old construction industry specialist insurance broker company, secured a buy-in deal with Oval who have secured bank finance of £53 million to fund further acquisitions.

Deal summary Client review

Company background

Malyon Lestrange was formed in the 1970s by Brian Malyon and Steve Lestrange, who had been friends since their schooldays. The business has achieved sustained growth and enjoys an excellent reputation within the construction insurance market. An insurance broker specialising in the construction sector, Malyon Lestrange services include tailored products for corporate and individual clients covering contract cover, tool and equipment hire and asset finance. They expect to play an important role in their clients’ work for major infrastructure projects, including the construction of the Olympic sites ready for 2012.

Deal background

Oval was formed in October 2003, when Caledonia Investments invested in RP Hodson, the Yorkshire insurance broker headed by Phillip Hodson. Oval has now acquired 10 companies and has recently secured bank finance of £53 million to fund further acquisitions.

Steve Lestrange
Director, Malyon Lestrange Limited

When considering appointing advisors to the proposed sale, what were your main considerations and concerns?
Reputation and professionalism, and that they only worked for vendors. They would not understand the business and market.

What were the determining points in deciding to appoint advisors?
Wanted professionals to handle their “one and only shot”.

Do you feel that Alaris was able to give access to different types of purchaser?
Yes.

Overall, what was the level of responsiveness from your advisors?
Very good. Nick Stone was always available.

Do you feel that negotiations were managed to your satisfaction?
Yes.

After the Heads of Agreement stage of the transaction was reached, do you feel that the advisors continued to contribute to the sale process?
Yes.

Overall, were there any key areas where you feel your advisors particularly contributed to the transaction?
Very good negotiation skills. Ability to push as far as possible without upsetting the other party.

In retrospect, would you use advisors again to assist in the sale of a business?
Yes.

Would you consider recommending us to other business owners considering a sale of their business?
Yes.

Are there any additional points that you would like to make regarding your experience of working with us?
Long drawn-out experience but positive result.

“We were very satisfied with the professional way in which Alaris dealt with the whole process”

Incentive Plus

Supplier of practical teaching aids and resources to primary and secondary schools in the UK, which fitted well with several of Electric Word’s 27 established management subscription titles.

Deal summary Client review

Company background

Incentive Plus (IP) is a leading educational mail order business providing practical materials in the areas of social, emotional and behaviour skills in children and young people. Incentive Publishing Limited is a smaller business with its own range of pupil motivational and behavioural materials which are marketed and distributed by Incentive Plus. IP’s largest markets are in secondary and primary schools, but also include social services departments and other professional groups working with children.

Deal background

The IP customer base and product offering fits well with several of Electric Word’s 27 established education management subscription titles. Electric Word plans to utilise its own educational databases to the benefit of both IP businesses. IP also provides Electric Word with opportunities to apply its e-marketing expertise to accelerate the shift to online sales, which currently account for just a small proportion of IP’s sales. In addition, Electric Word plans to introduce the IP product range to the customers it serves in other sectors.

Catherine McAllister
Director, Incentive Plus Limited

When considering appointing advisors to the proposed sale, what were your main considerations and concerns?
That we liked the people we were dealing with and that they made an impressive presentation. We were concerned that, as our deal value was not terribly high, we would be a low priority.

What were the determining points in deciding to appoint advisors?
We felt comfortable with Alaris and felt that would be a good job.

Do you feel that Alaris was able to give access to different types of purchaser?
Yes

Overall, what was the level of responsiveness from your advisors?
Very responsive – always there when we needed them.

Do you feel that negotiations were managed to your satisfaction?
Yes

After the Heads of Agreement stage of the transaction was reached, do you feel that the advisors continued to contribute to the sale process?
Alaris were very helpful at this stage even though the lawyers were handling most of the work. We feel that Alaris would have been willing to get even more involved if we had asked. Alaris were there to intervene where necessary and kept a keen eye on our interests throughout.

Overall, were there any key areas where you feel your advisors particularly contributed to the transaction?
Alaris were particularly helpful in making sure our limitations on warranties were as little as possible. We did not appreciate the importance of this at the outset and are very grateful to Alaris for their contribution in this area.

In retrospect, would you use advisors again to assist in the sale of a business?
Yes

Would you consider recommending us to other business owners considering a sale of their business?
Yes

Are there any additional points that you would like to make regarding your experience of working with us?
We are delighted with the result and really enjoyed working with Alaris

“We were delighted with the Alaris service from start to finish! We were surprised at the level and depth of their involvement throughout and they were always there to provide advice. Alaris adopted a disciplined approach, with attention to detail on the numbers and excellent negotiation; they closed the deal we wanted.”

Clark Clay Industries

CCI is the market leader in clay pigeon production in the UK and exports to many countries worldwide. Alaris negotiated and managed the sale of the company to a private investor group led by Giles Clarke, founder of Majestic Wine

Deal summary Client review

Company background

CCI International, one of the best-known names in shooting, has been manufacturing clay pigeons since 1982 and produces five types of clays including the Auto-Rabbit, Stealth and White Bio Flyer. The clays are formulated to ‘smoke’ or ‘dust’ when shot and are aeronautically engineered to have the straightest flight path. With annual production of some 100 million targets, CCI is the market leader in the UK and exports to many countries worldwide.

CCI is also the exclusive UK distributor of the Rio brand of shotgun cartridges.

Clay pigeon shooting has been growing at an annual rate of 7 to 10 per cent for the last five years, supported by the corporate market and the increasing popularity of the sport helped by Richard Faulds winning an Olympic gold medal.

Deal background

The private equity deal was made by a private investor group led by Giles Clarke, founder of Majestic Wine and co-founder of Pet City superstores. Giles Clarke teamed up with his brother Henry and Jonathan Goodhart.

Jonathan Goodhart will run the company, with the Chairman and Managing Director leaving immediately following completion.

Jonathan Cridland

Chairman, Clark Clay Industries

When considering appointing advisors to the proposed sale, what were your main considerations and concerns?
The ability to unearth serious buyers, to have professionals handle the sale process in order to reduce the diversion of management time and to guide us through pitfalls, to handle the negotiation process. We were concerned about confidentiality, cost and losing control of the process.

What were the determining points in deciding to appoint advisors?
Professionalism, straightforward engagement letter, association with Cavendish, central London offices, ability to unearth suitable private buyers.

Overall, what was the level of responsiveness from your advisors?
Excellent, could not be faulted.

Do you feel that negotiations were managed to your satisfaction?
Yes.

After the Heads of Agreement stage of the transaction was reached, do you feel that the advisors continued to contribute to the sale process?
Yes, where possible.

Overall, were there any key areas where you feel your advisors particularly contributed to the transaction?
Preparing the marketing document, finding us the buyers, keeping the process on track, acting as intermediaries.

In retrospect, would you use advisors again to assist in the sale of a business?
Yes

Would you consider recommending us to other business owners considering a sale of their business?
Yes, would be pleased to.

Are there any additional points that you would like to make regarding your experience of working with us?
The level of assistance remained high from start to finish and the response was always prompt.

Bassett

Sale process on behalf of the two brothers who had originally founded the business, eventually purchased by French furniture company Saint Gobain.

Deal summary Client review

Alaris managed a sale process on behalf of the shareholders of the company (two brothers who had originally founded the business). The business was selectively marketed to international companies including the leading groups in the United Kingdom and Ireland.

The ultimate purchaser had originally declined to pursue an acquisition early in the sale process. Alaris had, however, maintained a dialogue with the purchaser’s team so that they could be brought back quickly into the process at a later date (which was precipitated by a combination of their confirming internally their own strategy and the desire not to miss out to one of their competitors).

The deal negotiated allowed the vendors to retain the freehold property assets which were extracted from the company through a tax-efficient taper relief mechanism. The deal also allowed the vendors to retain a business in Northern Ireland which they continue to operate through their other business interests (despite the fact that it has customers in common with the acquired business).

Philip and Stephen Bassett

Directors, Bassetts

When considering appointing advisors to the proposed sale, what were your main considerations and concerns?
We sought experience in the sector and an advisor who only worked for the vendor, plus we wanted a good personal relationship with/respect for the advisor. Our main concern was having a single point of contact and confidentiality.

What were the determining points in deciding to appoint advisors?
As above but a strong recommendation was important

Overall, what was the level of responsiveness from your advisors?
The speed of response was always good. The thorough approach of Alaris was a source of confidence to us throughout the process, even when the sale process hibernated for short periods.

Do you feel that negotiations were managed to your satisfaction?
Yes – entirely