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Private equity and management invest in Aqualisa future

LDC, one of the leading private equity companies in the UK, has backed the management buyout of shower specialist, Aqualisa, from RBS and Sankaty Advisors.
Having completed 485 investments over the last 30 years, LDC has a portfolio of over 85 businesses, and operates from a regional network of 8 offices across the UK, investing up to £100m in MBOs, and Development Capital transactions.

Aqualisa, founded in 1976, invented their first patented, bi-metallic shower valve, still made in Westerham, Kent today, and in 2001, invented their first digital shower.

An investment made by LDC, part of the Lloyds Banking Group, follows 18 months of increased profits at Aqualisa, under the guidance of CEO, David Hollander, Dyson’s ex-managing director.

Hollander said: “This is a vote of confidence in Aqualisa’s future from both LDC and management. It’s the best possible news for customers, colleagues and suppliers. Sankaty and RBS have been very supportive, both financially and with operational expertise over the past three years, consistently showing a strong understanding of our industry and business goals. Partnering with LDC will allow us to pursue an even more rapid growth agenda along with our obsession with showers and fast-track our ambitions in the UK.”

A three year plan to unlock value in the brand and R&D is underway, with new product launches in the digital and electric categories those of which have shown a market share growth. New ownership also allows for bigger investments in the next phase of Aqualisa’s growth.

Steve Lee, newly-appointed Non- Executive Chairman, said: “I’m impressed with the dynamic management team, their understanding of the category and the iconic name,’ he says. ‘I look forward to adding value to the future of this great British brand.”

About Fiona Russell-Horne

Group Managing Editor across the BMJ portfolio.

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