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Eversheds Sutherland helps complete sale of UK’s fourth largest nursery education operator

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    Eversheds Sutherland (International) advises on the sale of Treetops Nurseries

    The team advised Epiris Managers LLP (Epiris) and the management shareholders of Treetops Nurseries (Treetops) on the sale of Treetops to Busy Bees, the UK’s leading nursery daycare provider.

    Epiris’ client, Electra Private Equity PLC (Electra), received proceeds from the sale of £94 million. This equated to a return of 6.5x cost and an IRR of 59%. This is the seventh exit delivering a money multiple of more than 3x that Epiris has achieved in the last 12 months.

    Headquartered in Derby, Treetops, the UK’s fourth largest nursery education operator, provides childcare to in excess of 6,000 children and employs more than 1,300 people. The company operates 61 schools, predominantly in the North of England, the Midlands and the South East.

    Treetops was spun out of PINE Unit Trust in 2012. The separation allowed Epiris to initiate a transformation strategy to accelerate growth through strategic focus, operational improvement and M&A. Epiris recruited Stephen Booty as Chairman and Charles Eggleston as CEO to deliver this strategy.

    The Eversheds Sutherland (International) team was led by corporate Partner, Catherine Eley and comprised Tom Jackson (corporate), Colin Askew (tax) and Sam Bhachu and Rachel Duffy (real estate).

    Chris Hanna and Nicola Gray of Epiris commented:

    “This was a terrific result for Epiris and for all the shareholders and Eversheds Sutherland played an instrumental role in achieving this for us.”

    Charles Eggleston (CEO Treetops) and Clare Wilson (CFO Treetops) commented:

    “Eversheds Sutherland (International) were invaluable to us during the sale process. Having worked with Catherine Eley and her team on several projects over the past five years, from acquisitions to debt refinancing, they were our obvious choice when it came time to sell. Their expertise and commercial approach ensured a smooth exit process and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend them to others.”

    Catherine Eley, Eversheds Sutherland (International), said:

    “This was a fantastic deal to be part of, helping Epiris and management achieve such a great result with a first rate business.”

    This information is for guidance purposes only and should not be regarded as a substitute for taking legal advice. Please refer to the full terms and conditions on our website.

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