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MBO for West Yorkshire welded mesh manufacturer

Following a Management Buyout (MBO), a new team has taken the helm at Brighouse-based Siddall and Hilton Products Ltd.

Supported by Yorkshire professional advisers, Clarion and RSM, the acquisition of holding and property companies Mantis Holdings Limited and Mantis Investments Limited, for an undisclosed sum, has resulted in the formation of a new holding company, Blackfish Enterprises Ltd.

Founded in 1898, Siddall and Hilton Products Limited is the UK’s leading producer of top quality welded steel mesh high-security, general fencing and industrial mesh panels. With a 53-strong team at its West Yorkshire headquarters, its products are exported to Ireland and throughout Europe. The company will continue to trade under the long-established name of Siddall & Hilton Products Ltd.

In 2015, Neil Stewardson led an MBO with Ian Thurley enabling the exit of the Siddall family, with the new management subsequently driving the business’s geographic expansion and product diversification.

Mr Stewardson’s shareholding has now been purchased by a consortium of existing management team members led by Mr Thurley, who takes on the role of chief executive, together with co-investors Morgan Beresford-Lambert, finance director; Andrew Lingard, purchasing and quality director; Simon Butterworth, IT and communications director; Neil Sutcliffe, sales director; and Pam Jackson, ERP manager.

The MBO, which completed on 16 August, was funded by ABN Amro with support from the company’s mortgage provider, Barclays, and supplemented by significant equity investment from the shareholders. A team of Yorkshire advisers supported the transaction including Hitesh Tailor of Clarion in Leeds and Richard Wilson of RSM who advised the management team; and Lester Wilson of DWF in Leeds who advised Mr Stewardson.

Having successfully managed the business since 2009 and established it as the UK market leader, Mr Stewardson now leaves Siddall and Hilton Products in order to focus his time on other interests and investments including a partial MBO at HPC Laser Ltd that completed in 2017.

Ian Thurley said: “The MBO represents the next stage in the evolution of Siddall and Hilton Products Limited. Having placed the business on a sound footing for the future, our focus will be on improving long-term sustainability through greater employee engagement and involvement, ensuring that we create a ‘one team’ ethos which builds on the loyalty, dedication and commitment already amply demonstrated by our staff.

“This latest investment further strengthens the business, enabling us to work towards our ambition of being the most efficient, profitable and environmentally friendly wire mesh producer in Europe as well as being an outstanding local employer.”

Hitesh Tailor of Clarion said: “Siddall and Hilton is a long-established business with a clear direction – with such an experienced and ambitious team at the helm, they have a bright future ahead.”

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