Corporate team complete £369m AUM transfer for Mobeus Venture Capital Trusts

Deal

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New deal with Mobeus Venture Capital Trusts

After an extensive due diligence process led by Shakespeare Martineau, the boards of the four Mobeus advised venture capital trusts (Mobeus VCTs) have unanimously approved the transfer of their management contracts – relating to combined assets under management (AUM) of £369m – from Mobeus Equity Partners (Mobeus) to Gresham House as part of the £36.1m acquisition by Gresham House of Mobeus’ VCT business.

Following completion of the acquisition, which is expected to take place at the end of September, the Mobeus VCT team – comprising 16 full-time employees, including two partners, plus three consultants – will transfer to Gresham House, a specialist alternative asset manager offering funds, direct investments and tailored investment opportunities, which includes managing the existing £486m AUM Baronsmead VCTs.

Corporate partner and head of investment funds Kavita Patel and corporate legal director Peter Mayhew, both of Shakespeare Martineau, acted on behalf of the four Mobeus VCTs as part of the transaction.

Kavita said: “We have acted for the Mobeus VCTs for the past 20 years, so we’re delighted to have supported them in the transfer of their management contracts to Gresham House. This represents a new step in the evolution of both the Mobeus and Gresham House VCT businesses, with increased prospects for shareholders flowing from the combined capability.”

Peter added: “The boards have taken their responsibilities very seriously and we have assisted them in undertaking significant due diligence, in particular, to ensure that the transaction is in the interests of shareholders.”

Following completion of the acquisition of Mobeus’ VCT business and transfer of the Mobeus VCTs’ contracts, the enlarged Gresham House strategic equity division will have six VCTs under management with more than £850m AUM – creating a leading player in the VCT market.

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Kavita specialises in a broad range of corporate finance transactions, both for public and private companies, including acquisitions, disposals, joint ventures, funding arrangements, restructurings and cross-border transactions.

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Lung cancer detection technology acquired in £21 million deal

Bould Opportunities has acquired Cizzle Biotechnology Limited in a multi-million pound deal, and raised more than £2.2 million, conditional on shareholder approval.   The combined entity will be listed on the Standard list and London Stock Exchange, with the support of Midlands law firm Shakespeare Martineau.

Cizzle Biotechnology, which is a spin-out from the University of York, is focused on patent protected technology for the early detection of lung cancer through the development of a blood test for the CIZ1B biomarker, and has been sold to Bould Opportunities in London for a total consideration of £21 million.

Bould Opportunities, a formerly AIM quoted company, was seeking acquisitions after disposing of its existing trading subsidiaries.

Allan Syms, chairman of Bould Opportunities, said: “I am delighted to have exchanged on the acquisition of Cizzle Biotechnology. I believe that the acquisition presents huge value for Bould Opportunities, with a technology looking to address an urgent clinical need. Shakespeare Martineau has been excellent in supporting us and Cizzle Biotechnology through the process, they understand our sector and have helped us get the best possible outcome for all stakeholders.”

Keith Spedding, partner and business transaction specialist at Shakespeare Martineau led the deal on behalf of Cizzle Biotechnology Limited, said: “The biotech industry is absolutely fascinating, we are seeing huge movements and rapid growth in this market as clinical need increases and technology and innovation races to keep up.  It’s been a long journey but great to get this deal done which will allow Cizzle now to continue to develop its blood test for the benefit of many in the continuing fight against cancer.

Keith was assisted by Jennie Davis and Gweni Rees-Evans.

Helping to detect lung cancer early

According to Cancer Research UK, in 2018 there were 17 million new cases of lung cancer globally with cases expected to grow to more than 27 million by 2040.

Allan continued: “Lung cancer is incredibly hard to diagnose at an early stage as there are few clinical symptoms. However, I believe that Cizzle Biotechnology can provide a solution to this problem through the blood test it is developing for the early detection of a majority of the different forms of lung cancer.”

Allenby Capital Limited acted as financial adviser and Novum Securities Limited as broker.

Dominic Prentis and Richard Pull of Goodman Derrick acted for Bould.

Contact us 

For further information please contact Keith Spedding or another member of the corporate team.

Our updated guide to recovery and resilience covers everything you need to navigate your organisation out of lockdown, unlock your potential and make way for a brighter future. Further advice in relation to COVID-19 can be found on our dedicated coronavirus resource hub.

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Shakespeare Martineau supports multimillion-pound acquisition of financial coaching business

The East Midlands corporate team at law firm Shakespeare Martineau supported Adam Price, the founder of financial planning firm Hatch Financial Planning, throughout a multimillion-pound acquisition by Octopus Group.

Hatch, which works with the likes of MoneySuperMarket, Sony Interactive Entertainment, Epson, and Experian in offering affordable expert financial coaching, will shortly rebrand to Octopus Moneycoach. Ambitious plans are in place to grow the business from 30 to 200 employees over the next two years and to bring financial coaching to the mass market, with both AI and human advice services available to customers.

As one of the UK’s fastest growing financial services companies, Octopus’s acquisition of Hatch will enable the business to reach a wider audience, helping even more people to access vital financial services. Partnering with other established financial advice businesses already housed within the Octopus Group, Octopus Moneycoach will focus on offering financial coaching and planning to the employees of businesses who are looking to further support their workforce.

Led by Lincoln-based corporate partner Michael Squirrell, the Shakespeare Martineau team supported Adam Price, the founder and CEO of Hatch, on all legal aspects of the transaction.

Of the transaction, Michael Squirrell, said: “Octopus Group is one of the UK’s fastest-growing companies, unafraid to invest in other entrepreneurially-minded businesses.  With Hatch being a leading player in the financial coaching market, the synergies between the businesses are clear and the sale of Hatch proves that there remain plenty of great investment opportunities out there.

“It was a pleasure to act for Adam on the sale, playing our small part in this important step forward on Hatch’s mission. The creation of Octopus Moneycoach to complement Octopus’s existing financial services businesses is the perfect next stage for Hatch.

Adam Price, founder and CEO of London-based Hatch, said: “There is a misconception that financial services are only for corporate giants and multi-millionaires. Hatch’s goal has always been to change attitudes towards financial planning, making it a simple and affordable process for everyone. Octopus Group shares this vision, having consistently championed financial advice, making it a natural partner for Hatch.

“I am hugely grateful to Michael and the rest of the corporate team at Shakespeare Martineau, whose expertise and guidance made the acquisition as smooth as possible.

The Shakespeare Martineau team involved in the acquisition comprised Michael Squirrell, Oliver Gutman, Sam Naunton, Oscar Ciaurro and Tait Grundy.

Contact us

For any further information contact Michael Squirrell or another member of our corporate team.

Our corporate team is ranked as a Leading Firm in the Legal 500 2021 edition.

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Shakespeare Martineau supports Solid State in multi-million pound acquisition

Shakespeare Martineau has supported Worcester-based technology manufacturer, Solid State plc ,with the acquisition of London headquartered Active Silicon Limited for an initial consideration of £6.3m. 

AIM listed manufacturer Solid State produces computing, power and communications products, and is a value added supplier of electronic and opto-electronic components.

Established in 1988, Active Silicon designs and manufacturers imaging and embedded vision systems, allowing the capture, processing, and transmission of image data in high performance and critical environments. With a longstanding, global customer base, Active Silicon’s products have applications in multiple areas of industry, science, and technology - including advanced manufacturing, life sciences, robotics, medical imaging, security and defence  

The acquisition of Active Silicon will boost the manufacturers product portfolio and enables the enlarged Group to address the growing demand for 3D vision and robotic applications, as well as the increased requirements for embedded machine vision and edge AI computing products. As a result, the acquisition also provides scope for the design and manufacture of own brand products and further routes to a global market for the expanded Solid State plc Group. 

The initial consideration of £6.3m which, when adjusted for the cash on the balance sheet, resulted in an effective net initial consideration of approximately £2.7m. It has been funded by the Group’s existing cash resources and banking facilities.  

Keith Speddingcorporate partner, who advised Solid State plc on the legal aspects of the acquisition, said: “We’ve been working with Solid State plc for more than 10 years, seeing them make multiple deals in that time. Its great to a see a West Midlands headquartered firm continue to grow and move from strength to strength in the current challenging environment. There are clearly opportunities in the current market for those with strong businesses. 

Gary Marsh, CEO at Solid State plc, said: “Solid State’s acquisition strategy targets complementary technologies with exposure to structural growth markets.  The acquisition of Active Silicon achieves both of these objectives while additionally broadening the capacity for the enlarged Group to increase its range of own brand products and value-added services.  This marks the sixth acquisition on which Shakespeare Martineau has advised us. The high quality, pragmatic advice provided by Keith Spedding and his team is very much appreciated. 

Contact us 

For further information please contact Keith Spedding or another member of the corporate team.

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Corporate team advises on global medtech joint venture

Our corporate team has supported medical equipment businesses Scientific Magnetics and Tecmag – part of Avingtrans – with their upcoming merger with Magnetica.

The merger will mark the fifteenth deal we’ve supported and completed on for Avingtrans in 13 years.

Magnetica, an Australian medtech and engineering company specialising in next-generation MRI technologies, plans to merge with Scientific Magnetics – a UK-based business that designs, manufactures, tests and installs bespoke superconducting magnet systems – and its US subsidiary Tecmag, which manufactures instrumentation for NMR, NQR and MRI markets.

Contracts have now exchanged, but completion of the merger is conditional upon Magnetica’s shareholder approval at a general meeting on January 29.

Subject to completion, Avingtrans, which owns a majority stake in Scientific Magnetics, will become the majority shareholder in the combined business, which will continue to be known as Magnetica.

The combined business will form a key part of Avingtrans’ Medical and Industrial Imaging division moving forward. Scientific Magnetics and Tecmag will become wholly owned subsidiaries of Magnetica.

In addition to the deal, Avingtrans, which designs, manufactures and supplies critical components, modules, systems and associated services to the energy, medical and industrial sectors, will also be investing in the newly formed business, to fund new MRI product development and commercialisation activities.

Keith Spedding, partner and business transaction and growth specialist led the deal. He said: “We’re seeing a lot of activity in the medtech market. It’s a fast moving, innovative industry with its products and services growing in demand. This merger is an excellent fit for all involved and will create a powerhouse of potential as they look to increase accessibility to high quality medical imaging around the world.

“Working with Avingtrans plc for more than a decade has been an exciting journey – we’ve seen them grow rapidly and we have been able to support this growth with our international, corporate and medtech expertise.”

Steve McQuillan, CEO of Avingtrans, said: “The team at Shakespeare Martineau have played a crucial part in our growth success over the years – they understand our business, they understand our sector and help us take a bigger picture view of the market.

“We believe this merger offers real potential to accelerate the planned move up the value chain in what is a highly specialised and integrated, international medical-imaging market.”

Contact us

For further information please contact Keith Spedding or another member of the corporate team.

From inspirational SHMA Talks to informative webinars, we also have lots of educational and entertaining content for life and business. Visit SHMA® ON DEMAND.

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What impact has COVID-19 had on M&A activity?

What impact has COVID-19 had on M&A activity?

Prior to the lockdown, M&A activity in the UK was looking healthy, with the ‘Boris-bounce’ encouraging businesses to make big investments once more. Brexit was done, political stability had returned to some degree, and the risks surrounding deal-making had reduced.

Overall, there was plenty to be optimistic about: liquidity in the financial markets and banks with private equity holding plenty of financial fire power. Good assets were in demand from trade buyers and private equity, which was leading to prices being chased higher. However, these feelings of security were swiftly removed once COVID-19 began to spread, causing organisations to revaluate their priorities. So, what does the future look like for M&A?

What happened to M&As when lockdown began?

Many businesses reacted to lockdown by implementing steps to preserve cash, so it was inevitable that many deals were pulled by buyers or their financiers. However, the impact of lockdown is not spread evenly across all businesses; some sectors, such as food and drink have thrived, whereas others have been unaffected, for example, energy and renewables, and some technology businesses.

There has also been continuing investment activity into innovative MedTech businesses, with those who are investing in the future notably more willing to look through the trading issues arising from lockdown.

What about deal-making post lockdown?

Optimists hope that deals on hold will be dusted off and rapidly implemented. However, there’s always a risk that buyers will look at the hole in profits created during lockdown and decide either to wait for a longer period of more positive trading or a price adjustment.

Even now, before the lockdown has ended, businesses with cash reserves will be in a strong position. As a result, they may decide to seize the opportunity to make strategic acquisitions as their less financially healthy competitors suffer or even go into administration.

What could the post-lockdown environment look like?

In any period of change there will be uncertainty and hesitation, but change also brings opportunity. For the well-resourced and brave, there will be the chance to accelerate growth plans by making strategic or even opportunistic acquisitions at prices well below what would have been achieved before 2020.

Interest rates should remain low, with the Bank of England and the Government flooding the market with liquidity. Providing, of course, that the extra liquidity doesn’t lead to inflation, the post-lockdown landscape should be vastly different to the 2009 financial crash, where financial markets dried up completely.

However, if inflation does return, the question is: are businesses and advisers prepared to enter a high inflation/high interest rate environment?

The pandemic may have put a stop to some M&A activity, but for those in a stable financial position, it has also created opportunity. Nevertheless, it may be a while before UK deal-making returns to the heady heights it was at pre-lockdown.

Contact us

We have launched our guide to recovery and resilience, helping to support businesses and individuals unlock their potential, navigate their way out of lockdown and make way for a brighter future. Further advice in relation to COVID-19 can be found on our dedicated coronavirus resource hub.

From inspirational SHMA Talks to informative webinars, we also have lots of educational and entertaining content for life and business. Visit SHMA® ON DEMAND.

Our free legal helpline offers bespoke guidance on a range of subjects, from employment and general business matters through to director’s responsibilities, insolvency, restructuring, funding and disputes. We also have a team of experts on hand for any queries on family and private matters too. Available from 10am-12pm Monday to Friday, call 0800 689 4064.

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Hyland House provides high-quality support and respite facilities to vulnerable people, specialising in dementia care. The home has space for up to 19 residents, with the building originally a residential home, then a hotel, before its final transformation into a care home in the late 1980s.

Staff are dedicated to giving residents care of the highest standard in a comfortable setting, encouraging them to create a supportive community, where relatives, staff and friends are considered as extended family. Imperial Care Group Ltd plans to continue this approach, becoming part of the family themselves.

We advised Hyland House on all legal matters of the sale, including corporate, property, employment and tax.

Andrew Smith, corporate partner and head of our Stratford-upon-Avon office, said: “We love working with family-owned businesses of all sizes and in many different sectors, and we’ve been developing a strong relationship with the Hylands team over a number of years. We knew that when they made the difficult decision to sell, it was essential that we provided them with hands-on support and legal expertise to help them navigate safely through the sale process.

“It was an emotional moment when it came to completion, but this is a fantastic opportunity for the new owner to take on a well-established business and continue expanding its excellent care services in the local Stratford area.”

Fiona Roebuck, former managing director at Hylands House, said: “Andrew and the team at Shakespeare Martineau were wonderfully helpful in the sale process. They understood how difficult the decision was to sell at all and removed as much of the stress as possible.

“Residents and their families can be reassured that the new owner is keen to continue to provide the same high standard of care in a family-like setting.”

Kashif Munir, director at Hylands House, said: “I am ecstatic to take over Hylands House which is an important part of the Stratford community. My objective will be to deliver best-in-class care, which has always been the ethos here. I am looking forward to building on current and new relationships and ensuring that Hylands continues building on its legacy.”

Find out more about our corporate team.

For advice or guidance on any commercial or legal issue, a member of our team can walk you through everything. Click here to discuss.

Having been in operation for over 40 years, Grenson Motors operates from a site in Crewe as an official dealership for Kia, Mitsubishi, Suzuki, and MG.

Our team advised Acorn Motor Group providing hands-on support and legal guidance throughout the process, completing the deal in just two weeks.

Adam McGiveron, corporate partner, said: “We’ve developed a strong relationship with the team at Acorn Motors over a number of years.  This acquisition is a strategically important step for the business and we’re excited to see them continue to expand. As their latest acquisition, it will enable them to build on their growth strategy of developing their geographical footprint – increasing their customer base and market presence.

“As their trusted legal advisors it was crucial for us to understand their objectives and the challenges they faced, and provide them with the tools to navigate them safely and efficiently through the process.”

Find out more about our corporate team.

For advice or guidance on any commercial or legal issue, a member of our team can walk you through everything. Click here to discuss.

Under the sale, Pall-Ex Group has been acquired by its network membership and management team.

The management team have committed to taking up shares within the company, with share ownership also being offered to Pall-Ex’s UK membership and international partners.

Founded by Ms. Devey in 1996, the business operates a global pallet network from its Leicestershire base, allowing customers to send freight across the world, via a pool of franchised hauliers. After starting the business from scratch, Ms. Devey is stepping back from her role, taking the position of ambassador and focusing on driving the company’s expansion throughout Europe.

Our corporate team acted for the buyer and was led by partner and head of the Nottingham office, Duncan James.

Duncan James, head of the firm’s Nottingham office, said: “Hilary has built an enviable business in Pall-Ex, which has rightfully earned its spot as a leader in the logistics space. By offering management teams and network members the chance to own the business themselves, Pall-Ex’s success can be preserved and built on in the future.

“Expanding from its central hub in Coalville, Pall-Ex is a shining example of an East Midlands business which is well on its way to conquering the world. Everyone is committed to seeing the business flourish and we’re sure that there are even greater things to come.”

Find out more about our corporate team.

For advice or guidance on any commercial or legal issues, a member of our team can walk you through everything. Click here to discuss.

Claverley Group is an independent parent company based in Wolverhampton which offers products and services based around news and information including the Express & Star and Shropshire Star newspapers, along with a number of other publications, design companies and printers.

Launched in 1813, The Guernsey Press is one of the island’s oldest businesses. For over 200 years it has acted as the voice of the community, providing residents with local news and entertainment.

A positive move for the newspaper, this sale by Claverley will allow the business to enter a new era with local Guernsey company, the Channel Islands Media Group Limited, a joint venture between Bailiwick Investments Limited and MXC Capital Limited.

Claverley Group was advised by law firm, Shakespeare Martineau on all legal aspects of the transaction, including liaising with local Guernsey lawyers, Ogiers, on various cross-jurisdictional matters such as pensions and employment.

A longstanding client of Shakespeare Martineau, Claverley Group has worked with the firm on a series of acquisitions and disposals over the years.

Richard Wrigley, partner and head of corporate and commercial at law firm, Shakespeare Martineau said: “The Guernsey Press has a rich and valued heritage. The decision by Claverley Group to return the paper to Channel Island ownership is significant and will help it maintain a local presence and continue to improve its services and product offerings.

“Claverley has been an excellent custodian of the Guernsey Press for a number of years, but now the time has come to move on. Safe in the knowledge that the paper is secure hands, the business can continue to drive growth in its other media companies and brands.”

Phil Inman, CEO of Claverley Group, said: “The Guernsey Press has been a valued part of the Claverley Group, building upon its strong heritage to remain the leading voice for the community. I am sure it will go from strength to strength, particularly as it will benefit from the fresh injection of energy and new ideas generated by a change of ownership.” 

Where clients come out on the balance will hinge on commercial considerations such as time pressure, the structure of the market and, especially, whether there is an uncooperative, aggressive, incumbent supplier with a lot to lose.

This means that there is a balance to be struck when advising on risks which are, by their nature, hypothetical. While I prefer to keep it pragmatic, we do sometimes have to consider some purely hypothetical risks, such as: “what happens when there is a tie?”

1. When are bidders “tied”?

There is a fairly well-established practice for a well-run procurement process. The contracting authority will publish a detailed soring table, setting out the evaluation criteria, questions, mark-schemes, scoring criteria and weightings for each element. This is often accompanied by a spreadsheet demonstrating how the scores can be calculated to two decimal places. When a procurement exercise is scored on the basis of multiple questions and multiple weightings followed by, perhaps, a moderation meeting, it makes the chances of a precise dead heat pretty minimal.

On the other hand, it is normal to have bids which are very close. Sometimes very close. I have been involved in procurement challenges where the difference between the winner and next bidder was less than 1%. In those circumstances, it is no surprise that a losing bidder might challenge – a point here or there might make the difference to someone between getting a sales bonus or getting the sack – but on the other hand, if there has to be winner there has to be a loser. But that of course leads us to the question – where the decision, on paper, is so close, and the client is neutral as to the bidders, it might make sense to treat that as a tie.

The contracting authority could treat the gap between the winning and losing bidders, if they are within a tiny range of each other, as not being “statistically significant”. This could be the cumulative effect of rounding up scores which leads to a margin of less than 1% in my earlier example. So this leads us to a question as to whether it is sensible to treat two scores as being so statistically insignificant as to be treated as a tie? This is not the orthodox position, and you can see immediately how this ties the contracting authority into knots: if a bidder has won on the basis of the scored arithmetic but then is not awarded the contract, then this is asking for a challenge.

2. What to do when bids are tied?

Procurement law treats tie-break criteria in the same way as it would for any other evaluation criteria. The European Court of Justice dismissed the attempt by the French authorities to treat a tie-break criterion as a “secondary” criterion, which is subject to a different, lower level of scrutiny, in the event of a tie-break on the main evaluation criteria. But the use of tie-break criteria becomes, at the stage that comes into play, the decisive criteria for the contract award, and so should be treated as award criteria.

It is instructive to look at approaches from the UK and elsewhere. Guidance which is published by a well-known publisher in the legal industry suggests either of the following suggestions:

“- Setting additional questions to be answered.

– Re-opening certain parts of the tender to be re-evaluated in writing or through a presentation.”

While it is certainly useful to set out the process, it still seems to fall a little short of the general procurement principles if the rules of the tie-breaker do not set out the questions to be answered or the parts of the tender to be re-evaluated. Which leads to the point that if you identify those questions or those areas, then why not include and score those questions in the first place; and if you can score those questions, why not take the results of those questions or areas as the tie-breaker? This has the merit of reflecting the contracting authority’s priorities, and is used, for instance, by the Department for Work and Pensions as follows:

“…the Authority will apply a tie-breaker in the event that two or more Bidders have the same combined score. Where a tie-breaker is required, it will be applied to the scores of all Suppliers with joint scores.

11.16 The application of the tie-breaker will be as follows. If at any step this produces a clear result which differentiates the Suppliers who have the same score, the process will be terminated.

Step 1 Highest Score Delivery Proposal and Target Audience 10.3

Step 2 Highest Score Programme Outcomes 10.5(a)

Step 3 Highest Score Participant Journey 10.4 (a)

Step 4 Highest Score Participant Journey 10.4 (b)”

This same approach is used by other public sector clients, using other award criteria reflecting their relative priorities:

“In the event of a tie break or statistical tie break (i.e. where one or more of the highest scoring Tenderers has an overall score that is within 0.5% difference), the Council will award the Contract to the Tenderer offering the lowest price.”

Similarly, previous guidance from the Office of Government Commerce, Making Equality Count, tentatively suggested the use of “equality” as a tie-break criterion where other scores are equal, reflecting how much equality counts.

On the other hand an OECD report on the public procurement regime in Mexico indicates that in the event of a tie, micro, small and medium sized enterprises should be favoured, in that order. Failing that the authority will draw lots to pick the winner at random, thereby reducing a detailed and complex process accessible only to spreadsheet enthusiasts to a one-off luck of the draw – simple, easy to understand and apply. I understand the ICC is even now looking at Mexican procurement law to see what lessons can be learned.

Our corporate team supported William Marshal during its acquisition of the Irish property investment business of Moralltach Global.

With the team’s advice, a deal was reached that benefits both parties involved, with Moralltach selling its property assets for shares and other consideration to William Marshal PLC. The value of the assets comes to a total of approximately  400 million EUR.

William Marshal

• Mansfield-based investor, helping innovative startups to turn their ideas into a successful business

• Supports businesses to ensure they have the right tools to make the best decisions when growing and moving forward to the next level

Moralltach Global

• Wexford-based property investment company, established in 2015

• Has a portfolio of approximately 200 properties and over 500 shareholders

Combining William Marshal’s investment expertise with Moralltach’s extensive property market experience has resulted in an enviable business. Harnessing William Marshal’s considerable skill in raising investment finance for asset portfolios will enable Moralltach to unlock its full potential.

Secure Retail and NVM

Our corporate team also acted for Secure Retail, an electronic payment systems provider, during its management buy-out by investor, NVM.

Secure Retail

• Founded in 1986

• Offers a range of hardware, software and managed services products, particularly focused on EPOS and payment systems

• Secure Retail’s clients are principally in the retail, hospitality and infrastructure sectors

• Supplies full integration with all payment services providers in the market

NVM

• Founded in 1984

• Private equity and investment firm which aims to invest in ambitious businesses either through management buy-outs or growth capital investments

• NVM has a broad range of sector focuses including software, industrial, healthcare and pharma and manufacturing

The payments market is becoming increasingly complex due to tighter regulatory conditions and demands for speed and flexibility from consumers. Combining Secure Retail’s technical and market expertise with NVM’s understanding of how to further improve Secure Retail’s innovative product strategy will lead to healthy growth and strong results.

Find out more about our corporate team.

A special purpose acquisition vehicle, Bermele plc acquire commercial technologies in the biotechnology, life sciences and pharmaceutical sectors.

The aim of the move is to allow the business to invest in companies that are in increasingly innovative scientific fields, such as those that focus on medical and technological advancements for cancer and mental health.

Our corporate team advised Bermele plc on the finance raising process, guiding them on all legal areas, from technical contractual elements to corporate governance.

Keith Spedding, partner in our corporate team, acted as lead adviser.

Commenting on the transaction, he said:

“Bermele plc has proved itself as a forward-thinking investor with this funding operation. The UK and international life sciences and biotechnology sectors are rapidly developing and innovative fields, making them attractive propositions for Bermele plc and others like them.

“UK business is unsteady in the current climate, but this move demonstrates how successful these sectors are despite the odds. Smaller companies should certainly take heart from witnessing investors such as Bermele plc readying themselves for business.”

Toby Hayward, Chairman of Bermele plc, said: “There is a constant need for new products and technologies in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology sectors, making it a fast-paced section of the market. Without new technology, revolutionary developments cannot be made in the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of illnesses and conditions.

“This transaction will enable us to engage with a number of innovative businesses, helping them to continue their growth.”