Caledonian Building Systems acquired by Champion Enterprises Inc

Caledonian Building Systems logo

Clearwater Advisor

Caledonian Building Systems Limited (Caledonian), the UK’s leading modular construction company has been sold to Champion Enterprises Inc (Champion) for £62 million, completing a hat-trick of deals at Caledonian.

The Clearwater International team of Paul Newell and Dan Bowtell originally advised on the sale of Caledonian to management and Dunedin Capital Partners in 2003 and have remained close to the business since. Recently Clearwater International has advised on the separation and sale of the group’s two trading divisions for a combined sum of £76 million. The sale of the manufacturing division to Champion quickly followed the sale of the Caledonian Safemaker business to Speedy Hire plc for £14 million which was completed in February of this year.

Founded in 1997, Caledonian is the UK market leader in pre-engineered buildings and off-site construction, specialising in the design and provision of multi-story commercial and residential structures using steel modular systems.The company operates across the UK from a 32 acre manufacturing site in Newark, Nottinghamshire and has an annual turnover of £90 million. Caledonian has broadened its product offering to provide steel-framed modular buildings for customers as diverse as the Home Office, the Ministry of Defence, residential developers and several hotel operators.

Dunedin backed the £37 million management buyout of Caledonian in November 2003, attracted by a company that had a unique market position, strong management team and considerable potential for growth. This funding has helped Caledonian continue its rapid growth and maintain its position at the forefront of the off-site construction market. Caledonian was recently ranked 38th in The Sunday Times Profit Track 100, an annual ranking of Britain’s private firms with the fastest growing profits

“Dunedin’s backing provided financial support at a critical stage in our business growth, and has allowed us to realise the potential in the off-site construction market. The new investment from Champion Enterprises Inc., the largest modular builder in North America, replaces Dunedin’s funding and represents a great opportunity for us.

“Champion offers Caledonian business synergies, financial strength and long term support to continue the development of our modular business: we are planning to build a fourth factory during 2006 adding another 33 per cent to capacity. The support by Dunedin and now the combination of Caledonian and Champion ensures that Caledonian continues to grow as a strongly backed, major player in the UK construction industry.”

Dave Turnbull, Managing Director, Caledonian

“We could not be more pleased for the Dunedin and the management team, all of whom have been rewarded for their hard work and willingness to invest just over two years ago.

“Having seen the quality of the business and its people when we sold the company in 2003, we were determined to help them realise their investment when the time came. We did a great deal of work talking to potential buyers over the intervening period, and are thrilled that the investment of time has paid off.” 

Paul Newell, Partner, Clearwater International