W J Furse was part of East Midlands Electricity and a manufacturer of lightning protection systems. The company was divested by its parent in December 1995 as part of its programme to dispose of non-core businesses. Cinven financed a buyout of the business by incumbent management, strengthened with the appointment of an experienced chairman.
The company was located in the UK with a dominant share of that market together with significant overseas sales in many different countries. Its profit history had been impressive and had remained so despite a recession in the UK construction industry. The business was therefore well positioned to benefit from any upturn in construction and at the same time had significant potential from developing its embryonic systems protection business.
The business substantially outperformed its business plan and in June 1998 W. J. Furse was sold to a US trade buyer, Thomas and Betts.
Multiple returned on investment: 2.8x