LDC out and Dunedin in as part of private equity switch at Kee Safety

Safety services business Kee Safety has closed the third management buy-out of its history by linking up with new backer Dunedin.

LDC has exited its interest in Kee Safety through a deal which sees Dunedin pick up the stake.

The new deal is worth £90 million, with Dunedin investing £32 million alongside the Acquisition Finance team at Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking and HSBC Leveraged Finance – which have jointly provided senior debt and a revolving credit facility.

LDC first backed Kee Safety in February 2011 when it backed an undisclosed management buy-out (MBO). The deal was struck with Barclays Ventures, which had itself supported a £26 million MBO in 2006.

From its base in the Midlands, Kee Safety provides safety services and products for protection of people from hazards. Since being backed by LDC, the business has grown from 180 to 274 staff and, for the year ending 31 December 2012, recorded revenues of £35 million.

Dunedin has made the investment using funds from its Dunedin Buyout Fund III,  a pot which achieved a close of £300 million in July 2013.

Chris Milburn, CEO of Kee Safety, believes that Dunedin was an ‘obvious’ fit for the business services company.

‘They have a strong partnership approach and a reputation for delivering on what they say they will do.

‘They also have a proven track record of enabling businesses to achieve growth organically and through acquisition.’

More on Dunedin:

Milburn adds that international expansion is a ‘key element’ of Kee Safety’s growth strategy. The company operates from bases in the UK, Germany, US and Dubai, with sales offices in four other countries.

Dunedin has now made three investments in the last 12 months, with the £34.5 million injection into Premier Hytemp and £43 million buy-out of Trustmarque Solutions predating the deal with Kee Safety.

Nicol Fraser, partner at Dunedin and new board member at Kee Safety, comments, ‘The business enjoys strong brand recognition and loyalty across its global customer base and has successfully utilised this strength to develop the brand and expand its routes to market.

‘The company offers a scalable platform to further exploit international growth opportunities.’

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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