Cairngorm Capital acquires MJ Wilson as first investment in its MRO strategy

Edinburgh-based Cairngorm Capital Partners LLP has acquired MJ Wilson Group Limited, a distributor of Process Instrumentation and Control products.
MJ Wilson sells highly technical Process and Instrumentation Products (including valves, controls, test equipment, pipe, fittings, flanges, fastenings and gaskets), as well as offering essential services such as calibration and repairs. Headquartered in Grimsby, MJ Wilson has five regional branches and workshops, and a number of specialist staff who provide best in class service and rapid delivery of critical components to a diverse range of long-standing, blue-chip customers across the UK.
The acquisition of MJ Wilson is intended to be the first in a series of investments within the MRO industry by  Cairngorm Capital, to create a new national and full-service MRO distribution company. To implement its MRO strategy, Cairngorm Capital is partnering with a team of highly experienced MRO industry executives led by Ian Ritchie, former UK Managing Director of Brammer UK.
Cairngorm Capital in partnership with Ian Ritchie, will undertake an accelerated programme of investment in UK headquartered, technically focused companies across the MRO sector (fluid power, bearings, power transmission and industrial supplies), working with each to advance a variety of organic growth opportunities, including enhanced customer acquisition, new product introductions and best-in-class customer service across a combined group.
This is Cairngorm Capital’s 11th proprietary transaction since July 2016 and the second platform investment for its second fund Cairngorm Capital II, which closed in April 2017. It is Cairngorm Capital’s first investment outside of the building products sector but remains consistent with its strategy of investing in well-performing UK companies and supporting ambitious management teams in driving transformation.
Gareth Wilson, MJ Wilson’s Executive Chairman said “Our reputation for technical sales with outstanding customer service has made MJ Wilson a leader in the MRO market. Cairngorm Capital and Ian Ritchie’s involvement will drive our continued growth and heralds a new phase in MJ Wilson’s development. Together, we will pursue new growth opportunities, to the benefit of our customers, suppliers and employees.”
This transaction was led by Amit Thaper, Investment Director at Cairngorm Capital, who said, “MJ Wilson is an excellent example of the sort of business in which Cairngorm Capital invests in – we are interested in firms that have demonstrated that they can weather economic volatility, have a differentiated customer offering and have significant future growth prospects.
“A priority for us is the quality and success of the management team, and we are excited to partner with the MJ Wilson management and Ian Ritchie and his team as we build a national MRO distribution business. We hope this is the first in a series
of investments in the sector.”
Cairngorm Capital were advised on this transaction by PwC (financial and tax), Gowling WGL (legal), CIL (commercial), Intuitus (IT) and JLT (insurance). Management were advised by Browne Jacobson (legal). MJ Wilson shareholders were advised by Evolution CBS (corporate finance), Blow Abbott (financial) and Walker Morris (legal). Barclays Bank Group provided bank facilities to support this transaction.

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