Leading mid-market private equity investor LDC has completed the sale of procurement specialist Inprova Group Limited (“Inprova”) in two separate deals.
In December 2018, AIM-listed Inspired Energy plc acquired Inprova’s energy division, with the existing management team acquiring the non-energy procurement business upon completion.
Headquartered in Warrington, Inprova delivers procurement services for private and public sector organisations across the UK. The business offers outsourcing, technology and consultancy services, providing its clients with a complete procurement solutions package.
LDC first backed the business in March 2014 to help fuel its ambitious growth strategy. Over the past four years the team has worked closely with CEO Paul Kennedy and his management team to truly transform the business into a multi-disciplinary group.
This included a buy and build strategy that saw Inprova acquire five complementary energy businesses and launch a bespoke division, Inprova Energy, in 2015. The move created one of the top ten business energy procurement and management consultancies in the UK and as part of the Inspired Group, Inprova Energy will now have an opportunity to drive further growth, as well as strengthening its position in the UK and Ireland.
Over the same period, LDC helped the business to expand internationally and launch in the US, in addition to diversifying its offer from a sole focus on the public sector to both public and private sector work. Together this enabled Inprova to expand its headcount by 100 per cent to 70 people and treble revenues to £15.3m for the financial year ending 30 June 2018.
The transaction was led by Investment Director Richard Ibbett and Head of LDC in the North West Jonathan Bell.
Paul Kennedy, CEO of Inprova, said: “Put simply, our business is a world away from where it was four years ago. With the strategic support, guidance and flexibility of the team at LDC we’ve successfully evolved from a public sector procurement business that worked predominantly in the North West to a multi-disciplinary group that now operates internationally. The sale of Inprova Energy to Inspired plc is a fantastic move for that team and they now have an even stronger platform for growth in what has become a highly competitive industry.
“Our focus now is on the expansion of our procurement business through the continued growth of our consultancy, outsourcing and technology services. I’d like to thank Rich and Johnny at LDC for their help along this journey, as without their support we would not have been able to build Inprova into the business it is today.”
Richard Ibbett, Investment Director at LDC in Manchester, added: “Inprova is a fantastic example of a business that not only has ambition, but the adaptability and drive to turn that ambition into a reality. Under the stewardship of Paul and his team, the business has taken every opportunity to expand the business and strengthen its proposition. Its journey is far from traditional, but the innovative, value creation strategy that’s been employed has delivered sustainable growth year-on-year and ultimately that is what’s important.
“Paul and his team are hugely ambitious, so I have no doubt that the business will continue to go from strength to strength, and we wish them every success for the future.”
Mark Watts, Peter Barkley and Keith Benson at Dow Schofield Watts provided corporate finance advice to LDC and the shareholders while Jim Truscott and Mark Lupton at Beyond provided legal advice.