Wilkes Corporate team advise Palmer Hargreaves on £4m BGF Investment

Partner Gareth O’Hara and Associate Samantha Forrest of the Wilkes Partnership Corporate team have advised Palmer Hargreaves, a marketing and communications agency headquartered in Leamington Spa, on a £4m investment from the Business Growth Fund (BGF).

The Company, which counts Mercedes Benz, Jaguar Land Rover and Audi among its clients, plans to use the cash to support its acquisition-led growth.

Andrew Clift, founder and chief executive, commented “We asked Wilkes to advise us on our recent deal with BGF which saw the fund invest £4m to support our growth plan over the next 5 years. There was a bit of pressure on to complete the deal quickly, as Palmer Hargreaves had an acquisition lined up in Germany, and the team at Wilkes gave us brilliant support. Towards completion, emails were being exchanged at hours normal people are sleeping, reflecting the commitment and diligence of the team.”

Palmer Hargreaves completed the acquisition of German IT and telecommunications communications business PR Partners in mid-October, expanding its range of complementary services and clients.

The invested capital will provide growth capital for acquisitions in the UK and Germany and will allow the business to expand its international presence, most immediately into China and Brazil.

Gareth O’Hara commented, “We have advised a number of BGF investee companies and are unaware of any other legal firm who has more experience or has advised more companies on BGF investments than ourselves. This transaction demonstrates again that we are an ideal legal partner for these sorts of deals. We were delighted to be able to use that experience and expertise to enable the Company to ensure a smooth and timely completion of the investment.”

As part of the deal, BGF will take a minority shareholding in Palmer Hargreaves and BGF investment director Ian Downing will join the board.

He said: “Palmer Hargreaves has developed a broad range of specialised marketing and communications services that are highly valued by its clients, with a particular strength in the automotive after sales market, where they have worked with a number of clients for over 20 years”.

“The senior team have demonstrated their ability to grow both organically and by acquisition and BGF is delighted to provide long term capital and strategic input to reinforce the team’s long term growth plans.”

BGF was advised by Julian Clough of Mazars.

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