Bristol corporate expertise proves winning ticket for charity lottery firm takeover

February 14, 2014

Bristol corporate advisers have helped the management team of a Wiltshire specialist charity fundraising firm complete their acquisition of the business.

Chippenham-based The Woods Group stages raffles, weekly lotteries, response handling and fulfilment for major clients such as the RSPB, National Trust and Motability.

The buyout, financial details of which have not been disclosed, was backed by Santander and Concertare Partners, the private equity investor lead by serial entrepreneurs Nick Baker, who previously led the growth of Sharp’s Brewery and several other businesses, and John Lowndes, who has a long track record of building businesses.

Bristol law firm TLT provided legal advice to Concertare while accountants Grant Thornton’s Bristol office undertook financial due diligence for the investor.

Accountants Bishop Fleming, who have an office in Bristol, advised the management team on taxation issues while the exiting shareholders were advised by accountancy firm Baker Tilly, which also has an office in Bristol.

Other advisers included Swindon law firm Clark Holt, which advised the management team, Exeter-based Isca Ventures, which was lead adviser. Bath and Swindon law firm Withy King advised the exiting shareholders.

The transaction provides the existing shareholders with an exit.

The TLT team was led by corporate partner Andrew Webber and included individuals from various teams across the firm including commercial, corporate banking, employment and tax.

Andrew Webber said: “The new investment and the introduction of Nick Baker and John Lowndes with their experience will help the management team to build on their core business and achieve their ambitious growth plans.”

Nick Baker adds, “Rarely does the opportunity come along to support such an outstanding team; who have developed The Woods Group, into the excellent business it is today.  We are delighted to have invested in the long term future of this industry leading business.”

TLT’s corporate team has a long-standing relationship with entrepreneur Nick Baker. Three years ago it advised the shareholders of Cornwall-based Sharp's Brewery – best known for its Doom Bar beer – on its sale to leading global brewer Molson Coors for £20m.

Isca Ventures partner Matt Eves added: “Woods is a high quality business with strong management. We were pleased to have advised the management team on this transaction and look forward to following their success over the coming years.”


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