YFM Equity Partners has backed the management buy-out of Douglas Gill International (Gill), a leading global designer and supplier of technical marine clothing and accessories, for an undisclosed sum following a sales process led by Clearwater International. Yorkshire Bank provided debt funding and working capital facilities to support the deal.
As part of the deal, Steve Richards will be joining Gill as non-executive chairman. He is currently Chairman at QualitySolicitors and Waterbabies and was previously CEO of Interflora and Managing Director of Manchester United Merchandising. The management team includes: Managing Director John Deverill who has been with Gill for 16 years; Sales Director Bryan Stewart and Product Director Matt Clark. Gill was founded in 1975 by Nick Gill, who will continue as a non-executive director. Nick began designing and making technical sailing clothing from his father’s lace factory in Nottingham. Today the company has revenues of £12m and employs 44 people at its Long Eaton site. It manufactures a wide range of sailing clothing and accessories which it exports to over 35 countries and it is the official technical clothing sponsor for the internationally renowned Aberdeen Assets Cowes Week Regatta. In 2013, Gill won the Queen’s Award for Enterprise: International Trade with exports reaching over 70% of turnover.