Catalyst advises McNicholas as Kier makes investment

Catalyst Corporate Finance has advised the shareholders of McNicholas, a leading infrastructure services provider in the UK, on its sale to Kier plc. The acquisition will help strengthen Kier’s position in the utilities and infrastructure services sector.

McNicholas is an established UK engineering services provider to the UK’s multi-utility sectors including telecommunications, gas, power, water, renewable energy and rail.  Working across the UK and with headquarters in Elstree, Hertfordshire, it employs 1,880 people and has a client base which includes Virgin Media, Network Rail and UK Power Networks. McNicholas had been in family ownership for nearly 70 years.

Catalyst Corporate Finance was introduced to the business through the company’s Chairman, Rod Bennion OBE, and worked closely with the business for a year to ensure it was well prepared for a transaction.

Richard Sanders, partner of Catalyst, who led the deal supported by Robert Young and Mike Mullally commented: “It has been a pleasure to advise McNicholas on its successful deal with Kier, particularly given its heritage. It is a huge step-change for the business which will now have the extra support from Kier to accelerate its growth plans and build on its well deserved reputation in the utility and engineering services market.” 

Barry McNicholas, Chief Executive of McNicholas said: “Our business has been servicing the rapidly growing telecommunications industry for over fifty years and our expertise and knowledge has given us leading positions in new sectors such as gas, power, rail and civil engineering. We are excited by the opportunities that joining a larger group gives our teams to expand and grow and we are very grateful to Catalyst for their strategic advice and support throughout this process.  The support of Kier provides our clients access to a broader range of capabilities and we look forward to joining Kier and playing a role in delivering the Vision 2020 strategy.”

Commenting on the acquisition, Haydn Mursell, Chief Executive of Kier said: “The acquisition of McNicholas builds on Kier’s strategy to accelerate growth and hold leading positions in its chosen markets. It is a highly complementary addition to our utility services business and enhances our presence in the power, rail and telecoms markets, with its long-standing client relationships. We are delighted that Barry and his team will remain with Kier to continue the growth and development of the business.”

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