Project Description

HMT acted as reporting accountants for Northern Venture Managers, HSBC and the Longhirst Group in the acquisition of WTI by the Longhirst Group.

The Longhirst Group was formed following an MBO in December 2002 led by Mr Stephen Cowell and Mr Chris Alete and funded by NVM and bank debt. It is a successful well established business based in the North East of England providing training, consultancy, careers guidance and conference centre management, with its success based upon delivering quality products. Following the MBO Management continued a policy of growth through diversification and acquisition, particularly in the South of England.

WTI is a charitable company based in Tadley, offering training in the utility sector, and was a natural fit for the Longhirst Group, and in particular gave the group national coverage.

The acquisition was funded by an additional investment by NVM of £1.5 million and senior debt provided by HSBC. The total funding package provided by HSBC was £8.3 million including replacing the existing senior debt.

Andrew Thomson commented:

“Longhirst is a well organised and managed business, and the acquisition of WTI is an exciting opportunity for Longhirst to enjoy continued success.”