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Bridgepoint in the News

26 August 2011

Bridgepoint Development Capital to acquire four businesses within Hampson Industries’ Aerospace Components & Structures division in a $84 million transaction

Bridgepoint Development Capital (‘BDC’) is to acquire four businesses within Hampson Industries’ Aerospace Components & Structures division in a transaction totalling $84 million.

The four businesses are: Lamsco and Bolsan in the US and Attewell and PSG in the UK - and operate on a standalone basis within Hampson Industries PLC. The businesses together represent the global leader in the manufacture and supply of shim components to the commercial and military aerospace markets. In the year to 31 March 2011, the businesses had revenues of $44 million. Following the transaction, the acquired businesses will be re-named 'Shimtech Industries'.

Shims are components manufactured in either solid or laminated peelable form out of a variety of materials, including metal, plastic or composite material that are used to isolate two materials by achieving specified or closely toleranced dimensions during the assembly of aerostructures. Shims are typically sold to the major aircraft OEMs and their Tier1/Tier 2 suppliers.

In addition to manufacturing shims, Shimtech also manufactures a range of standard and high performance non-metallic seals and gaskets for high technology industrial applications, as well as providing value-added integrated supply chain and logistics solutions.

BDC has appointed Clive Snowdon as executive chairman of Shimtech. A veteran of the aerospace industry who led the development of Umeco plc over 14 years from revenues of £20 million to £450 million, he says that the company will benefit from renewed focus on its growth plans at a time when the commercial aerospace sector is enjoying rising build rates.

"Shimtech Industries is ready for further investment and expansion as it broadens its product range to address the requirements of the emerging new generation of aircraft and the shift to lightweight composite materials." he said.

Bridgepoint Development Capital partner Adrian Willetts commented: "This is a good time to invest in aerospace. There is strong demand from airlines around the world to renew and expand fleets, and aircraft manufacturers have significant order books. In response to this we will work with management to identify opportunities for further market consolidation through selective acquisitions which will allow Shimtech Industries to offer customers greater geographic and product opportunities."

Bridgepoint is currently invested in another aerospace component supplier through a separate fund (Bridgepoint Europe III). Permaswage, based in France and the US, manufactures permanent couplings used by aerospace manufacturers to connect hydraulic, air, fuel or other tubing in all types of civil and military aircraft.

Lloyds Bank, Birmingham, is providing senior debt and working capital facilities to the business. Advisers involved in this transaction were: for Bridgepoint - CSP (market), Steen Associates (corporate finance), PWC (financial due diligence), Deloitte (debt), Wragge & Co (legal), Drinker Biddle (legal), Marsh (insurance) and ERM (environmental); for management - Pinsents (legal); for Hampson Industries - Lazard (corporate finance) and Eversheds (legal).

The transaction is subject to standard regulatory clearances.

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