Mid-market private equity investor, Equistone Partners Europe Limited has invested in Airdrie based flexible vehicle rental solutions T.O.M. Vehicle Rental.
Equistone has acquired a majority stake in the Company, investing alongside management and the original founder-owner. The financial terms of the investment are undisclosed.
Founded in 1991, T.O.M. provides long-term, flexible hire of commercial vehicles (vans, trucks, trailers, and cars) to over 900 public and private sector customers. Its rental business comprises 11 hire locations across the UK (six in Scotland and five in England) and is one of only two multi-vehicle rental specialists in this market. The Company also operates a complementary commercial vehicle dealership across five sites through its two franchised dealer brands, Mercedes Benz and Citroen.
T.O.M. generated revenues of £213m in the financial year ending March 2016. Equistone’s investment will support the Company’s ongoing organic and acquisitive growth plans to further increase its market share within the UK vehicle rental sector.
Tim Swales, Partner at Equistone Partners Europe, commented: “T.O.M. has a strong business model, a compelling growth trajectory, and a highly regarded, dynamic management team with an impressive track record. Accordingly, it represents a great addition to Equistone’s UK portfolio and we’re delighted to have backed the Company.”
Robert Stewart, CEO of T.O.M. Vehicle Rental, said: “Equistone’s investment in T.O.M. is transformational for our business, in terms of both the financial backing and the increased executive team bandwidth it provides. This additional support will allow us to accelerate the ambitious expansion in our market share, number of UK locations, fleet size, customer base, and rental service offering. Throughout these changes, the same quality of service and concern for customer satisfaction that have underpinned T.O.M.’s success to date will remain our core focus.”
Tim Swales and Paul Harper from Equistone will join the board of T.O.M. The buyout is Equistone’s 17th investment from its fifth fund, Equistone Partners Europe Fund V.
Equistone was advised by Deloitte, Private Acquisitions Ltd., Grant Thornton, OC&C, and Travers Smith.