Daily News: July 17, 2012

RJD Backs Management Buyout of Harrington Brooks

RJD Partners (RJD), one of the UK’s middle-market private equity investors, has backed the management buyout of Harrington Brooks, a provider of debt management solutions, from Inflexion Private Equity.

The buyout is being led by chief executive, Matthew Cheetham, who joined the business in 2007, and Finance director Terry Sweeney, who was part of the original buy-in team in 2005, both of whom will increase their stakes in the business going forward.

PNC Business Credit, an established asset based lender and the company’s incumbent banker, provided debt facilities.

Harrington Brooks is based in Sale, Manchester and was founded in 1998 as a debt management plan provider. The company provides debt advice, debt management plans, individual voluntary arrangements and related non-lending services including claims management to indebted customers.

The overall debt solutions market has experienced significant growth since 2005 driven by a rapid increase in both secured and unsecured lending, pressures on personal disposable income and an increased understanding of debt management products. Harrington Brooks has achieved excellent organic growth, outperforming the market in recent years.

John Dillon, managing partner, RJD Partners comments: “We are delighted to back a well-established and proven management team in the buyout of Harrington Brooks. With UK household indebtedness continuing to rise, there is significant potential for the company to build on its excellent growth track record in a highly fragmented market place. We are confident the team is well positioned to fully exploit this.”

Matthew Cheetham, CEO of Harrington Brooks, said: “We were impressed by RJD’s in-depth understanding of the debt management sector and the exciting potential that this dynamic market presents. RJD fully shares our ambitious vision and in partnership with them, we look forward to taking the business on to the next stage in its strategic growth plan.”

John Dillon, Alex Hay and Richard Court worked on this transaction for RJD. John Dillon and Alex Hay will be joining the board of Harrington Brooks.

RJD Partners was advised by Clearwater CF (Mike Reeves, corporate finance advice); Eversheds (Mark Spinner, legal advice); Grant Thornton (Mo Merali, financial, tax and IT due diligence); KPMG (John Hughes, financial and commercial due diligence), GK Political (Luke Kennedy, political due diligence); Deloitte (Liz Ballinger, structuring), Gallagher Heath (George Minoprio, insurance due diligence) and The Quinn Partnership (Paul Quinn, management assessment).