Enterprise Finance Guarantee secures finance for MBO of CCSigns

The future of Alfreton-based CCSigns has been secured thanks to the Enterprise Finance Guarantee (EFG) scheme, which enabled a longstanding employee to purchase the 43-year-old business.

CCSigns, MBODespite having no deposit, by using the EFG scheme Paul was able to obtain finance from NatWest Bank to complete the purchase.

The EFG scheme enables smaller businesses that are unable to obtain finance from their lender due to having insufficient security, to meet the lender’s normal requirements. The scheme was able to provide NatWest with a government-backed 75% guarantee against the outstanding facility balance enabling the bank to say ‘yes’ to the finance request.

Mitchells Chartered Accountants and Business Advisers assisted in the negotiations with NatWest and The British Business Bank, which manages the scheme on behalf of the government.

With the finance in place, Paul was able to purchase the shares from CCSigns former owners – Andrew and Liz Cullen, and acquire the business in a friendly MBO.

Paul commented, “I’m thrilled to have acquired CCSigns and still can’t quite believe it. It’s life changing. Having worked for the company for so long and been preparing for the eventual handover, it’s amazing for it to have finally happened and a great start to the New Year.”

Andrew McDaid, partner at Mitchells added: “Being able to assist Paul in the buyout has been a pleasure. We brought in Caroline Thomas, a Corporate Solicitor from Freeths, who acted on behalf of Paul and advised on the legal documentation for the MBO. This collaborative approach meant that we were able to secure a smooth transition for all parties involved. I am confident that CCSigns will continue to go from strength-to-strength under Paul’s now formalised leadership.”

This collaborative approach meant that we were able to secure a smooth transition for all parties involved. I am confident that CCSigns will continue to go from strength-to-strength under Paul’s now formalised leadership.”

Paul added: “Mitchells was invaluable in making sure that the deal moved along. They kept the momentum going on a daily basis as well as dealing with and managing unexpected issues.”

Caroline Thomas from Freeths, added: “It has been a real pleasure to assist Paul throughout the MBO process – from advising on the initial terms of the deal, to getting the legal documentation in place and completing the deal. I wish Paul all the best for the future. I am certain Paul’s determination will ensure that CCSigns is a continued success.”

Based on Mill Lane in Alfreton, CCSigns specialises in estate agents’ boards, providing a complete end-to-end service comprising of design, printing and installation of signs. It employs 16 staff and has 10 vans.

Prior to acquiring 100% of the business, Paul had a 10% share in CCSigns given to him in 2007 by the owners as part of their exit strategy. Since then Paul has taken a leading role in running the business, developing it into one of the leading sign companies in the area.

Paul explained, “All jobs have been secured as part of the MBO and I have every intention of keeping the business running as it has been. I’ve been effectively running the company for the last few years and have been a part of CCSigns for 24 years – since leaving school. Having taken a leading role in growing and developing the business over the last 10 years, I know we’re in a strong commercial position. Going forward, I want to build on the great reputation we have as a successful, growing, customer-focused business.”

Learn more about Paul’s experience using the EFG scheme here.

For more information on how Mitchells can assist with a management buyout within your business, visit the ‘our services’ part of the website here http://www.mitchellsaccountants.co.uk/our-services/specialist-support/corporate-finance/ or contact Mitchells on 01246 274 121.

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