HgCapital steps in as new backer for vehicle management business Leasedrive

Berkshire-headquartered Leasedrive has a new equity investor following an exit by existing backer LDC.

HgCapital has acquired a controlling stake in Leasedrive, through a transaction which sees LDC exit but then re-invest.

The divestment follows a five-year relationship between LDC and Leasedrive, which began through a buy-out in August 2008.

Having been set up in 1983, independent privately-owned vehicle management company Leasedrive was subject to a buy-in management buy-out in May 2003, before merging with Velo in 2007.

According to LDC, the private equity firm and Leasedrive implemented a ‘strategic growth plan’ to consolidate the business’ position in the market through the growth of its contract hire customer base. LDC has also helped to fund acquisitions during its investment period.

Under the terms of the deal, HgCapital has bought 80 per cent of Leasedrive, while LDC and the management team have rolled 20 per cent of their investment/equity into the new financial structure.

David Bird, managing director at Leasedrive, says that the new investment involving the management retaining its equity and shareholding demonstrates the confidence shared by the new backers and operational team.

‘HgCapital has an excellent track record of successfully investing in growth businesses,’ he adds.

‘It has a demonstrable track record of identifying and working with leading technology-enabled service companies to achieve sustainable growth.’

The exit is the second for LDC inside a week after the investor sold its stake in Kee Safety to Dunedin. Leasedrive is also the 12th strategic exit of 2013 for LDC following sales involving lighting, retail and electrical manufacturing businesses.

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Alex Snodgrass, LDC investment executive, comments, ‘In Leasedrive, we’ve enjoyed a successful partnership with a high-quality management team of a market-leading business.

‘Against a challenging economic environment, Leasedrive has performed extremely well; growing its market share, securing significant new contracts with key blue-chip corporates and completing the high-quality and strategic acquisition of Masterlease.’

Hunter Ruthven

Hunter Ruthven

Hunter was the Editor for GrowthBusiness.co.uk from 2012 to 2014, before moving on to Caspian Media Ltd to be Editor of Real Business.

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