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Friday, 18th September 2020
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Competitive auction process gets strong price for Noonan back
The sale of the Noonan Group to Alchemy partners has won the Mid-market Corporate Finance Deal of the Year.
The Noonan Group attracted international and domestic interest with a number of bids from both international and domestic private equity and trade buyers
The sale of Noonan Services Group to Alchemy Partners for €90 million wins the Corporate Finance Mid Market Deal of the Year. The transaction was also awarded Funding Facility Deal of the Year, with financing by Ulster Bank Ireland Limited in its capacity as underwriter and mandated lead arranger in the deal.

Arthur Cox acted for Noonan Services Holdings (Jersey) in the disposal of 95 per cent of Noonan Services Group. NCB advised and managed on behalf of Noonan Services Group all aspects of the transaction.
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Colm Duggan, partner at Arthur Cox who advised the Noonan Services Group, said the benefits of the deal for Alchemy Partners was the purchase of a large, highly successful company with a very good record and with significant opportunities for further growth. ‘It also represented Alchemy Partners’ further expansion in the Irish market and indicated its preference to invest in conjunction with a management team, having previously backed the management buyout of the fashion chain A Wear from Brown Thomas in 2007,’ says Duggan.
Colm Duggan

He continues, ‘For the Noonan family shareholders, who we represented, the sale was a significant return on a family business started from scratch in 1977 and expanded organically thereafter. The strength of the price achieved reflected both the quality of the business sold and the domestic and international interest showed in it.’

In terms of timing, Duggan says that clearance from the Irish Competition Authority was required which meant there was a period of approximately four weeks between signing and completion of the acquisition.

The fact that the target group included companies in Ireland, England, Northern Ireland and Jersey added to the complexity of the deal, says Duggan. ‘As a cross-border M&A deal, it brought up multi-jurisdictional legal issues requiring lawyers to be engaged from the outset from each of these jurisdictions to deal with the various legal issues that came up in the due diligence and the sale documentation,’ he says. ‘Additionally, the management buyout aspect of the deal meant that there was additional documentation being negotiated on the management side which had to run in tandem with the main sale documentation.’
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