SME Loans

Bainbridge Electrical Ltd in management buyout deal

Cumbria-based industrial and commercial electrical engineering contractor, Bainbridge Electrical Ltd, has been sold in a seven-figure management buyout deal.

The deal sees James Dickinson, the company’s former Commercial Manager, acquire the Kendal-based business from the Bainbridge family, who founded it over 50 years ago.

The corporate finance team at Armstrong Watson brokered and advised on the deal, which was supported by debt funding from Mercia Fund Managers. Nick Hodgson of Cartmell Shepherd provided legal advice.

Bainbridge employs 28 people and carries out a range of industrial and commercial electrical work across the North West. Services include design and installation of electrical works, instrumentation, safety systems, pumps, controls and automation. Clients range from blue-chip companies such as United Utilities to local businesses.

The company was established in 1959 by David Bainbridge and since 1999, has been run by his sons Geoff and Steve Bainbridge. The deal has facilitated Steve’s retirement from the firm, whilst Geoff Bainbridge continues to work for the company as a consultant.

James Dickinson, who now becomes Managing Director, ran his own subcontracting business before being invited to join Bainbridge in 2014 and has been instrumental in winning a number of major new contracts.

Commenting on the deal, James Dickinson said: “I am delighted to have completed the purchase of Bainbridge Electrical. Under Geoff and Steve Bainbridge’s leadership I have found it a fantastic place to work with a highly skilled and motivated workforce. They have set quality standards high and I plan to carry on providing the same first class service. I would like to thank Richard Rankin (Armstrong Watson) and Nick Hodgson (Cartmell Shepherd) and their respective teams for all their hard work during the transaction. There are some exciting opportunities on the horizon and I cannot wait to take the company forward.”

James is keen to continue moving the business forward, building on the existing customer base and embarking on an ambitious growth strategy.

Richard Rankin, Head of Corporate Finance at Armstrong Watson, added: “Bainbridge Electrical is a very successful and long-established family business. We have been working closely with James and the Bainbridge management team to ensure the transaction was a success for all parties. The deal had its challenges, but by working closely with the funders and James, the desired outcome for everyone was achieved. This deal gives control of the business to a trusted manager with a successful track record and helps to secure Bainbridge’s future for another generation. James is ideally suited to take the business forward into new ventures.”

Chris Carter, Investment Manager at Mercia Fund Managers, said that the loan it had provided to support the buy-out allowed Mr Dickinson to retain a 100% stake in the business. “James is a highly motivated manager who has already been successful in winning new business and has ambitions to expand the business. Our funding will allow him to pursue his growth plans and lead Bainbridge into the next stage of its development.”

Isabelle Inskip of Weightmans advised Mercia Fund Managers and Close Brothers provided an invoice finance facility to support the deal. The vendors were advised by David Filmer of Harrison Drury.