Rutland cashes in on pawn star

Special situations private equity house Rutland has realised a £44.5 million return on its investment in pawnbroking business H&T, as a result of the company’s £54.2 million AIM float this morning. This represents a 2.9 times return on investment inside of two years.

Rutland acquired H&T in late 2004 – investing £15.4 million of equity in the business – then set about overhauling the company’s management team, operational structure and store portfolio. Now operating 69 UK outlets, the company generated a £6.7 million profit before interest, tax and amortisation in 2005 and has also diversified to now offer cheque cashing and payday advancing services.

In addition to selling shares on behalf of Rutland, H&T also raised £18.2 million, with the help of broker Numis. This cash will be used to refinance the group and repay loan-notes.

‘We feel we can take the business much further in adding to our network in under-served regions and capitalising on the start made in launching new products,’ says chief executive John Nichols.

Leslie Copeland

Leslie Copeland

Leslie was made Editor for Growth Company Investor magazine in 2000, then headed up the launch of Business XL magazine, and then became Editorial Director in 2007 for the online and print publication portfolio...

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