Kangaroo Self Storage makes £13m leap into England

Kangaroo Self Storage, a Scottish-based self storage business, has taken a significant step forward in its bold ambition for growth with an acquisition that triples the size of the business and extends its footprint into England.

In a deal worth £13m the self-storage company has acquired Smart Storage, a North West England based self-storage business.  This transaction was funded by a blend of debt and equity, with the senior debt provided by HSBC.

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This latest acquisition comes on the back of Kangaroo’s expansion into Edinburgh last summer, where the storage company secured loan financing from HSBC enabling it to buy a large warehouse in Edinburgh’s Sighthill Industrial Estate.  This laid the framework for the company’s growth strategy in response to rising customer demand.

Smart Storage has a portfolio of six self-storage facilities and includes a mixture of freehold and leasehold assets and provides a Maximum Lettable Area of 240,000 sq ft. The stores are prominently located sites in Warrington, Widnes, Liverpool, Preston, Bromborough and Altrincham.

Kangaroo Self Storage already owns and operates three freehold stores across Scotland in Dundee, Glasgow and Edinburgh.  The combined portfolio will see Kangaroo Self Storage own and operate nine stores with a Current Lettable Area of 310,000 sq ft and Maximum Lettable Area of 442,000 sq ft.

Mike Wilson, the outgoing CEO of Smart Storage commented on the sale of the business: “Over the years, we built an exemplary team at Smart Storage and we are confident that it will continue to flourish, guided by Chris Stevens’ visionary leadership.  We are delighted to have found such an inspirational purchaser for the business and are genuinely excited by Kangaroo’s expansion south of the border.  This transaction is good news for Smart’s Team members and their families, for the self storage industry as a whole, and not least for the thousands of people in key locations in the northwest who will continue to benefit from having such great facilities on their doorstep.”

Chris Stevens, Managing Director at Kangaroo Self Storage, will become the CEO of the enlarged Group.  His growth plans include further geographical expansion, strategic acquisitions and investment in the Group’s properties and staff, whilst realizing the value that can be extracted from the merger of the two businesses.

Commenting on his changing role, Chris said; “I have spent some time now at Smart Storage’s stores and this has allowed me to get to know and listen to staff and customers alike.  I’ve discovered passion and expertise in a loyal and hardworking workforce.

“And, like those at Kangaroo, Smart Storage have a very credible, successful and experienced management team with a track record of delivering growth through managing operational efficiencies and excellent customer service.  There are some great ideas in Smart Storage that I will be bringing into Kangaroo.  I would like to thank the management for their contribution and dedication to the business.

“My strategy will be to maintain, develop and invest in the caring, can-do attitude of the staff in both businesses as we realise the substantial growth that I believe is possible.  As awareness is raised in the self storage market, we are well positioned to meet this demand with high quality stores in strong performing local markets. 

“I will look to continue our strategy of acquiring complementary businesses and add new stores via organic growth to expand our capabilities. That, plus our ongoing commitment to provide value-for-money, high quality, secure storage rooms coupled with attentive service will enable us to continue to attract and retain customers – across both the business, domestic and student markets.”

In addition to the senior debt funding for this acquisition, Kangaroo secured new bank development funding from HSBC, to invest in both the Smart Storage and Kangaroo portfolios. The investment in Scotland includes work on the second phase of the Edinburgh store set to commence shortly.

Kangaroo Self Storage was advised by MBM Commercial, Saffery Champness and Temple Bright in London.

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