A Teesside chemicals company is set for expansion after a private equity firm pumped £25.5m into the business.
NorthEdge Capital has made the investment in Fine Industries Limited, a Seal Sands-based business which operates five subsidiaries including Fine Organics, which produces chemicals for the pharmaceutical, crop protection and speciality chemicals markets.
The firm counts blue chip firms across the world as its clients, exporting to Switzerland, Germany, USA, Brazil and Ireland.
The £40m-a-year turnover business will now accelerate a capital expenditure programme as it seeks to boost capacity as part of growth plans.
The business was originally founded in Peterlee in 1977 but expanded into its current Teesside base in 1984, where it now employs around 270 staff.
The business was the subject of a management buy-out from a large multinational in 2008.
Following five years of growth, Craig Morgan, managing director, who was part of the original buy-out team, is leading the latest buy-out backed by NorthEdge Capital.
Morgan said: “Our business continues to deliver strong growth and has recently undertaken significant investment in our production facilities.
“The backing from NorthEdge provides us with an even stronger platform to accelerate our growth and move our business to the next level. It’s great to be working with a team that are as committed and passionate about our future as we are.”
The deal was led by NorthEdge partner Ray Stenton, director James Hall and investment manager Tom Rowley. Ray Stenton and James Hall will be joining the board as non-executive directors.
Stenton, partner at NorthEdge Capital, said: “Fine Industries is a high quality business that operates in a large and growing global market, with long term fundamental drivers supporting continued growth. We are looking forward to working with the management team to support their growth plan.”
The deal is the fourth transaction by NorthEdge from its maiden fund, which closed at £225million in March this year. It follows investments into FPE Global, the high-growth specialist engineering firm, in February, Jigsaw24, the Apple and creative IT solutions provider, and Help-Link, the boiler and central heating installation specialist, in April.
KPMG advised NorthEdge and PwC advised the company. Legal advice was provided by Addleshaw Goddard for NorthEdge and Bond Dickinson for the company. Debt facilities were provided by HSBC and Yorkshire Bank.
KPMG’s team in Leeds and Newcastle provided corporate finance and transaction services advice to NorthEdge during the deal. Jon Hurford, associate director in KPMG’s Corporate Finance team in Newcastle, said: “We are delighted to have been part of a team of local advisors who assisted NorthEdge with their investment in Fine Industries.
“This is a transaction which underlines the quality and strength of the businesses and management teams which are present in the North East and we continue to see increased interest from private equity firms in investing in the region.”