Preston utilities specialist swoops to buy fourth company

Preston's Ipsum group has completed its fourth acquisition
Preston's Ipsum group has completed its fourth acquisition

A Preston utilities and infrastructure services group has completed its fourth acquisition, Stormport Professional Services Limited.

Backed by Aliter Capital, this is Ipsum Group Ltd’s second successful transaction of 2019, following the acquisition of EEG in February.

Cambridgeshire-based Stormport, founded in 2009 by Steve Wright and Pete Hulyer, is a provider of electricity network asset installation, maintenance and repair services, and network connections to the Distribution Network Operator (DNO) and Independent Connections Provider (ICP) markets.

The acquisition of Stormport will enhance Ipsum’s existing services and geographic footprint in the UK electricity sector and add new customer relationships with key DNOs.

In addition, Stormport’s growing ICP presence is highly complementary to Riversway-based Ipsum’s existing business in that market.

Ipsum chief executive Greg Fernie said: “The acquisition of a market leading business like Stormport creates a very exciting business prospect for Ipsum Group to operate in the electricity distribution market.

"Across the group we have developed a range of innovative technology solutions that help digitise business which we now want to deliver to UK DNOs.”

The acquisition will see Ipsum Group combine the Stormport business into its own, growing revenues from £54M to £65M and increasing its headcount from 400 staff to approximately 530 staff.

Steve Wright, co-founder and managing director of Stormport commented: “We were attracted to Ipsum because of the strength of the management team. It’s quite evident that Ipsum is spearheaded by exceptionally entrepreneurial people with the track record, ambition and funding to allow Stormport, as part of a larger combined and growing group, to reach its full potential.”

Greig Brown, partner of Aliter and chairman of Ipsum sai d: “We are very pleased with the progress being made on the Ipsum strategic plan. The addition of Stormport significantly increases Ipsum’s capabilities within the electricity market and we look forward to working with the Stormport management team.”

Financial advisors for the deal were; legal advisors - DWF, customer commercial due diligence - Drystone, insurance due diligence - Jelf and financial due diligence – BDO.