Lavendon had its origins in a December 1992 management buyin of the NAP Group. The company supplied powered access products on a hired or leased basis. Such equipment is used to provide temporary aerial access as an alternative to scaffolding. It is used in construction, maintenance, outside television broadcasts and other one-off uses where it provides a quick, safe and cost effective access solution.
Cinven saw in NAP an opportunity to improve a business which had a solid if unspectacular track record, but which was well-positioned for growth under new management.
The underlying growth in the market for powered access equipment looked set to continue for the foreseeable future although it was highly fragmented. The management sought to expand the business through more professional sales and marketing, as well as growing the branch network throughout the UK and continental Europe. Following Cinven’s initial investment, further funds were made available to finance an acquisition that added further scale to the business.
The growth strategy was successful and in December 1996 the business was floated on the London Stock Exchange.
Multiple returned on investment: 3.5x