Clearwater International UK has advised telecom infrastructure services provider WHP Telecoms Limited (WHP), on its buyout from Palatine Private Equity (Palatine), supported by private equity firm Equistone Partners Europe (Equistone).
WHP is a leading provider of end-to-end services for the planning, design, acquisition, deployment, upgrade and maintenance of mobile network masts, antennae and base stations for all the major UK mobile operators. Employing over 440 people and headquartered in Warrington, the business operates on a national basis with operations in Leeds, Glasgow, Birmingham and Heathrow.
WHP has grown significantly since Palatine invested in 2015 with turnover increasing from €34m to almost €86m forecast in the current year to May 2018. With a customer base committed to further investment, new enhancements such as 5G and the introduction of new technologies, the company is well placed to continue this growth for the foreseeable future. The much publicised M&A activity in the sector will create more change and present further opportunities for WHP.
Palatine, which backed the company in 2015, will co-invest for a minority stake alongside Equistone and the management team, which continues to be led by Chief Executive Rob Potter.
The Clearwater International team was led by CEO Michael Reeves, with support from Director Michael Loudon and Associate Directors Lachlan Dorrity and Mark Maunsell. Clearwater’s Debt Advisory team arranged debt financing from Permira Debt Managers, led by Partner Mark Taylor, supported by Director Tom Barnwell, and Associate Mark Ward. RBS continue to provide banking facilities to the business.
Andi Tomkinson, Investment Director, Equistone
“I very much look forward to working with Equistone to further develop our offering – delivering innovation with a focus on high levels of service. We would also like to take this opportunity to thank Palatine for the support they have provided so far, and we look forward to continuing our work with them as we take our business to the next chapter.”
Rob Potter, Chief Executive, WHP Telecoms
Andy Lees, Partner, Palatine Private Equity
Michael Reeves, CEO, Clearwater International