Bluebox advises on the sale of Marine & Towage Services

Bluebox Corporate Finance is delighted to announce the sale of Marine and Towage Services Limited (MTS), one of the UK’s leading ‘tug boat and marine service operators’ to Bhagwan Marine, a pre-eminent marine services company from Australia.

The deal, which represents the fifth successful transaction for Bluebox in 2014, is one of the most significant transactions in the European marine services market in recent years and provides further evidence of Bluebox’s ability to provide unrivalled access to International purchasers for their clients.

Established by sole shareholder Jon Parslow in 1996, MTS has grown to be one of the market leaders and now operates with an extensive fleet of tug boats and other specialist vessels providing support services to clients in a range of diverse markets. Based in Brixham, Cornwall, the business now operates internationally servicing clients’ coastal towage, deep sea towage, marine support and pilotage needs. MTS operates with a £30m fleet and has an EBITDA of c.£4m. Pricing and other transaction details were not disclosed.

The buyer, Bhagwan Marine, is a significant player in the Australasian market with headquarters in Western Australia and a primary focus on the oil and gas vertical. Bhagwan, a family owned business which operates with a fleet of over 100 specialist vessels, identified the compelling synergies that exist between the two businesses as well as the significant development opportunities are presenting themselves for MTS.

Paul Herman of Bluebox, commented:

“The sale of MTS to Bhagwan has not only provided our clients with a lucrative exit, but has also provided an enhanced platform that will allow for the continued development of the company in the coming years. This was a key requirement of our clients from the outset. This transaction highlights the importance of ensuring that businesses are properly prepared in advance of a sale and the value that can be created by pre-sale planning and identifying the right, well-funded international strategic purchasers. We look forward to watching the ongoing success of the combined operations in the coming years.”

Bluebox Corporate Finance, which has recently been named 2014 Corporate Finance Adviser of the year from a poll over 50,000 votes at Acquisitions International, continues to advise clients on their ‘entire journey’ up to, and at the point of, their sale. Their market-leading pre-sale planning programme has now been enjoyed by over 50 clients and the success of their transaction team this year provides firm evidence of the benefits that can be enjoyed from pre-sale planning.

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