Ovivo completes cross-border MBO

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Clearwater Advisor

Press Release

Clearwater International has advised on the management buyout of the Midlands-based municipal arm of Canadian-listed group Ovivo (TSX: OVI).

The municipal arm, based in West Bromwich, is involved in the supply, installation and maintenance of equipment and treatment processes in the municipal water and wastewater industries. The business employs around 70 staff, with a turnover of €17.7m.

Having left the Ovivo brand, the deal sees the company trade under the name Jacopa. The new company will continue its focus on the UK and Ireland wastewater sectors, offering a variety of brands including Copa, Jones+Attwood, Aquator, Tomkinson and MBR Technology.

The management buyout will see the business being led by well-known industry figure Alex Lloyd. Previously vice-president at Ovivo’s UK municipal arm, Alex now takes on the role of managing director at Jacopa.

Clearwater International, led by partner Rob Britton and associate Mark Gillingham, advised Ovivo’s senior management team on the deal.

“Having developed the opportunity for a management buyout, we selected Clearwater International as the right partner to provide professional advice and support to the management team. From the initial close support from Phil Burns in assisting and leading negotiation of heads of terms for the deal, through working closely with Mark Gillingham and Rob Britton in the detailed financial modelling of the business to engage lenders and resolve their challenges to our business plan, to final negotiation in order to close the deal, Clearwater International was able to field a highly-experienced team who were dedicated to completing the buyout within a tight timescale. The expertise, pragmatism and care shown by the team achieved a great result for us and we would not hesitate to recommend Clearwater International as excellent corporate finance advisers.”

Alex Lloyd, Managing Director at Jacopa

“This transaction provides a sensible solution for both parties, demonstrating that vendor-assisted MBOs such as this remain a viable exit route for corporates looking to divest non-core assets. A sale to a knowledgeable and enthusiastic management team can achieve strong valuations and amicable outcomes, whilst avoiding prolonged processes and last minute surprises.”

Rob Britton, partner at Clearwater International