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Barclays Private Equity backs £135 million management buy-out of Deb

15 Mar 2004

Barclays Private Equity, a leading mid-market private equity house, has backed the management buy-out of the Deb Group of Companies, in a £135 million transaction.  Deb manufactures and markets occupational skincare products and proprietary dispensing systems servicing the industrial, automotive, medical and commercial sectors. The buy-out provides Barclays Private Equity with a majority stake in the business. Bank facilities have been provided by Bank of Scotland Corporate Banking.  

Deb developed the formulation for Swarfega over 50 years ago, the success of which established it as the market leader in the UK industrial hand cleaning sector. The Derbyshire based Group now has operations in the UK, Europe, USA, Canada and Australia and is a market leader in occupational skincare products and dispensing systems.  

Bill Forrester, previously chief executive of SIG plc and currently chairman of John Laing plc; joins the board as chairman.  

Rob Myers, who led the investment for Barclays Private Equity commented: “Deb is a fast growing global skincare business. It has market leading positions in a number of key territories which reflects the strength of its core brands and innovative technology. The management team is experienced and has demonstrated an ability to formulate and implement a cohesive and focused strategy for the development of the Deb business. We are looking forward to working with an excellent team running a high quality business.  

Roy Tilleard, FD of Deb commented: “The Barclays Private Equity buy-out will enable Deb to remain independent and provide a sound financial platform to continue its strong growth. Deb will continue to invest in skincare product development and proprietary dispensing technology and customer service. The strength and depth of the Deb management will ensure the continued success of the business”.  

Barclays Private Equity were advised by KPMG and Addleshaw Goddard. The Vendors were advised by PricewaterhouseCoopers and Travers Smith Braithwaite. Bank of Scotland were advised by DLA.

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