Clearwater advises on Inspired Gaming MBO


Palatine Private Equity has backed the Management-buyout of the amusement and gaming division of Inspired Gaming, led by Chief Executive Adam Hodges.

Clearwater Corporate Finance introduced and advised both Palatine and Management on the transaction.

The acquisition will see the Burton-upon-Trent-based site of Inspired Gaming, which has other operations in Warrington and London; renamed Playnation. Under the terms of the deal 350 staff will be transferred under TUPE agreement from Inspired Gaming, to the new Playnation business.

Playnation is the UK’s leading supplier of amusement and gaming machines to holiday parks, motorway services, bowling centres and airports, including Butlins, Haven, Parkdean, Park Resorts, Moto, Roadchef, Welcome Break, Tenpin and First Bowl. Turnover is expected to reach £31m in 2013.

Clearwater’s deal team included Managing Partners Mike Reeves and Phil Burns, and Deal Leader Sebastian Saywood, who advised Management and Palatine on the transaction.

Palatine has acquired a majority shareholding in the business, which is led by Chief Executive Adam Hodges. Managing Partner Gary Tipper, Investment Director Beth Houghton and Investment Executive James Winterbottom of Palatine, worked on the deal. Gary and Beth join the board of the company as Non-executive Directors and a Non-executive Chairman will be appointed in due course.

Phil Burns said: “It has been a pleasure to support such a strong management team in a market leading business with exciting growth prospects. This deal demonstrates our strong presence in the UK private equity arena and commitment to working closely with management teams and funders. ”

Adam Hodges said: “This is a really exciting time for Playnation. We are all really looking forward to moving the business forward with the help of the investment from Palatine. We are well placed for growth, with a fantastic roster of clients. We are pleased Palatine are working with us at this transformational time for the business. Clearwater were Instrumental in raising the debt and equity finance, without which the deal would not have been possible.”