LDC backs multi-million pound MBO of Connect Communications

LDC has completed an investment to support the multi-million pound management buyout of Connect Communications, a managed telecommunications specialist that supplies highly technical telephone systems and unified communications channels to businesses across the UK, mainland Europe, Middle East and Africa.

Established in 1992, Connect Communications is an expert in unified communications and call-centre software technology services, which it provides to a wide range of businesses, from SMEs through to multi-site and multinational enterprises.

The business manages the day-to-day running of multi-site telecoms systems, via a state-of-the-art Networks Operations Centre and a limited network of third party engineers. Connect Communications’ industry leading software enables technical faults to be identified and rectified quickly and efficiently, before problems escalate.

With a growing industry reputation for its unique servicing model, Connect Communications has a blue chip customer base comprising many leading financial services companies including corporate bankers and investment banks, legal firms, major technology companies including systems vendors and systems integrators, as well as some of the most prestigious names in the UK hospitality sector. High-profile global enterprises supported by the business on a pan-EMEA basis include Barclays, Coca-Cola, CSC and HP.

Headquartered in London, Connect Communications employs 55 people, and has a strategic network of international operations, including offices in Paris and Frankfurt.

The business has experienced significant growth in recent years as a result of its unique customer-led servicing model and market-leading technology, underpinned by increasing demand by large corporates across the EMEA region for well-maintained and streamlined telecoms systems.

Having reported significant revenue growth in recent years, Connect Communications has an annual turnover of circa. £10million.

The deal with LDC will provide further capital to help accelerate the continued expansion of Connect Communications, primarily through continued investment in its market-leading technology and service portfolio, whilst also facilitating the business’ growth with both existing and new customers here in the UK and across the EMEA region.

LDC has backed Connect Communications’ existing management team Martin Cross and David Rose, who will retain a significant shareholding, together with entrepreneur Alex Tupman who joins the business as Chief Executive. The transaction also enables the other two co-founding shareholders to fully exit the business.

The deal was transacted by LDC’s Reading team, led by Managing Director Yann Souillard together with Investment Director Alex Clark who will both join the Connect Communications board with immediate effect.

The transaction was completed with support from a number of regional advisors including Steve Bartlett Corporate Finance who advised management and NewCo. Shoosmiths acted as legal adviser to LDC.

Commenting on the transaction, Alex Clark, Investment Director at LDC said: “Connect Communications is a well-established market-leading business, operating in a buoyant market that is being driven by consistent demand for highly technical telecoms systems maintenance by both SMEs and large corporates alike. The business provides a high-end service to its customer base across the UK and EMEA region, and is supported by a well invested infrastructure. We will be working closely with the management team, led by Alex Tupman, to execute the next phase of the business’ growth.”

Chief Executive of Connect Communications, Alex Tupman said: “Connect Communications has well-invested intelligent infrastructure and toolsets within its service centre, with the capability to support enterprise clients on a global basis. The deal with LDC brings additional strategic and financial support to the business and going forward, we will be actively looking to invest further in the business’ asset light, but technology-rich, unique service capability, whilst also expanding the company’s global reach, channels and penetration of the enterprise space, as well as its existing service portfolio.”

Notes to Editors

  1. LDC is the private equity arm of Lloyds Banking Group and is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.  
  2. LDC backs ambitious management teams from UK-based medium sized companies seeking up to £100m of investment to fund management buyouts or development capital transactions.
  3. LDC invests in a broad range of sectors and has particular experience in Healthcare, Industrials, Retail & Consumer, TMT, Travel & Leisure, Support Services, Construction & Property and Financial Services.
  4. LDC has a UK regional network with locations in Aberdeen, Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds, Newcastle, London, Manchester, Nottingham and Reading.