Catalyst advises Palatine on TTC investment

Catalyst has advised Palatine Private Equity on its investment in TTC Group, a leading provider of road user and cycling education courses in the UK. The transaction was introduced by EY Corporate Finance in Birmingham who advised the shareholders. The deal sees Palatine back current MD, Jim Kirkwood and his team, and is the second investment from Palatine’s Midlands office within 18 months of opening.

TTC, founded in 2000 by Graham and Jenny Wynn, provides national speed awareness courses as well as a full suite of other driver training, compliance and education courses across the UK.

Having won its first police force contract in 2006, the company has since grown to work with 11 police forces across the country. TTC expanded its offering with the addition of cycling training courses which it introduced in 2013 following the acquisition of Cycle Experience, a provider of National Standard Cycling Courses.

The Telford-based business currently employs 123 staff and handles 330,000 clients annually across its 200 training venues in the UK.

The investment from Palatine will help to build upon the strong foundation created by Graham and Jenny Wynn and will support TTC’s expansion into a number of areas, one of which is the development of the corporate driver training division. Founders, Graham and Jenny Wynn will retain an ongoing interest in the business.

The Palatine team comprised of Partner Tony Dickin, Investment Director Richard Thomas and Investment Executive James Painter.

Richard Thomas, Head of Midlands at Palatine Private Equity, said: “We look forward to supporting TTC in continuing to deliver high quality training to its existing customers, in addition to, building upon its position in the corporate driver training market. Having already made a number of acquisitions, TTC’s buy and build strategy will be an important element of the on-going growth plan.

TTC is led by a talented management team with a robust business model to deliver significant growth over the coming years. This was a particularly attractive investment for Palatine given the strong public and political support for driver rehabilitation and increased road safety.”

Jim Kirkwood, CEO at TTC, said: “I am delighted to be working with such a proactive and supportive investor in Palatine. The existing TTC business provides an excellent platform for growth and investment. With road safety at its heart and our quality of delivery second to none, our ambition to innovate and succeed is naturally taking us into complementary and adjacent markets where new technologies bring a wealth of opportunity. My colleagues and I are very excited about our future with Palatine and the opportunity that it presents.”     

Jeremy Harrison, partner of Catalyst said: “TTC is at the forefront of driver education and improving road safety. It is therefore a particular pleasure to have supported Jim Kirkwood, Andrew Strong and Palatine on their recent investment.  With a growing presence in the corporate market and the potential for future acquisitions, we look forward to continuing to support the team deliver their plan for growth”.      

Palatine was advised by Catalyst Corporate Finance - Jeremy Harrison, James England and Chris Bates, Gateley Plc and RSM with due diligence provided by Grant Thornton, Fairgrove Partners, Global Counsel, Marsh and The Berkeley Partnership. The vendors were advised by EY Corporate Finance with legal advice provided by Blake Morgan. Debt facilities were provided by Santander Corporate and Commercial Banking.

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