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Region's deal scene rebounds with upturn in corporate activity

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A series of recent mergers and aquisitions involving medium sized tech and distribution companies across the East of England suggests confidence is returning to the region's deal scene. Over the past week three significant deals invoving Ipswich based IT and telecoms company QDOS-sbl Group, a Norwich-based price comparison site Know Your Money and Wisbech-based BRT Industrial point suggests that businesses' appetite for corporate activity is returning. It follows the $5 billion acquisition by Cambridge-based industrial software group Aveva of California-based OSIsoft agreed at the end of last month. Other deals unveiled in the region over recent days include...

Norwich-based price comparison firm acquired by US group

Know Your Money, a Norwich-based UK price comparison site, is to be acquired by NerdWallet, a large US-based website and app to provide what they say will be the most comprehensive financial comparison website in the UK. Know Your Money was co-founded in Norwich in 2004 by John Ellmore and Jason Tassie, digital marketing specialists with experience at Google and Aviva. Last year, Deloitte named Know Your Money a Fast Track 500 business, and the firm was in The Sunday Times 2017 Tech Track 100 shortlist. NerdWallet was founded in 2008 and is based in San Francisco. Know Your Money co-founder Jason Tassie said: “Working with NerdWallet will help us accelerate our existing growth plans, expanding our content library, tools and guides to offer users more support in financial decision making. Know Your Money and NerdWallet are perfectly aligned in their goal of empowering people to make better, more-informed financial decisions.” Know Your Money shareholders were advised by Sequence Advisers and law firm Mills & Reeve.

Ipswich-based IT company combines forces with four others in sector

Ipswich based IT and telecoms company QDOS-sbl Group is to join a group of five firms involved in managed IT services and unified communications who are combining to create a new venture Ridgewell Group, which is backed by private equity. The combined group employs over 100 people, half of which operate out of the head office in Ransomes Europark in Ipswich. Founded 27 years ago, QDOS-sbl specialises in the hospitality sector and clients include The Ritz, Shangri-La at The Shard and Hotel Café Royal. The other four firms in the combined group are Ridgewall, Connecting London, Telnet and Nomis Connections. Ridgewall started acquiring businesses in the sector early last year and in November Inflexion Private Equity invested in the firm and back the acquisition of QDOS-sbl. The combined group has around 1,800 customers and is launching a new brand.

Cambs-based industrial distributor acquired in move to create UK-wide group

Wisbech-based BRT Industrial, a specialist distributor with nine depots mainly in the east of the country, is to become part of a wider UK-wide distribution network. It follows the acquisition by Antifriction Components of the industrial arm of BRT Group. The multi-million deal will create the UK’s largest specialist distributor of its type by combining Bristol-based Antifriction, which supplies moving parts for industry and has ten depots mainly in the west, with BRT Industrial. The deal also allows the family-run BRT Group, a leading supplier of vehicle ball bearings, to focus on the automotive market. Phillip Clarke, managing director of BRT Industrial and one of the family, will transfer to Antifriction along with his 49 staff. He said: “While we are very proud of our heritage as a family business, the market has evolved and reluctantly we recognised that we needed to demerge the two arms of the business. This deal will allow both sides to prosper by focusing on our specialist areas.” BRT Industrial’s depots in are in Inverness, Edinburgh, Doncaster, Grimsby, Wisbech, Wickford, Slough, Southampton and Avonmouth

Photo: Phillip Clarke (left) with Antifriction MD Andrew Fleming.

Last Updated ( Monday, 19 October 2020 09:06 )