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Female founders are having a standout year—that’s not the whole story

Female-founded companies are raising venture capital at significantly higher levels than at any point in the last decade, suggesting that long-standing efforts to boost representation in entrepreneurship are paying off at an accelerating rate.

 

In the first half of 2021, US venture-backed companies with a female founder or co-founder took in $25.12 billion, more than the total amount raised in any prior year.

The advances come as women founders raise a greater share through late-stage deals and high-value sectors. Also helping: More women are writing checks at VC firms, and the networks of female founders in places like New York have matured.

But a deeper look into the data highlights stubborn realities for female founders. The gap in funding between all-women teams and mixed-gender teams continues to grow. And female-founded startups’ share of overall VC dollars remains small.

 

Read More – www.pitchbook.com

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Earned wage’ start-ups winning over VCs with an ESG agenda

Venture capitalists increasingly want to position themselves as socially responsible investors by funding businesses that benefit society—while steering clear of companies considered harmful.

An example of this may be playing out now with fintech startups catering to wage earners with low credit scores.

Until recently, people who had difficulties making ends meet between paychecks had to turn to payday loans, which have been widely criticized as predatory for charging excessive interest rates and pushing borrowers into debt traps.

But over the last five years, fintech startups have started to challenge payday lenders by allowing workers to receive all or some of their earnings before their scheduled paydays. This business concept, known as earned wage access or EWA, has been piquing investor interest.

This year alone, seven startups offering earned wage access products raised $1.13 billion in debt and equity, surpassing total funding collected by such companies from 2015 to 2020, according to PitchBook data.

QED Investors, one of the most prolific fintech-focused venture firms, backed five EWA companies around the world such as Rain in the US, Wagestream in the UK, Xerpay in Brazil, Minu in Mexico and Refyne in India.

“We recognized that consumers were not getting a good deal from payday lenders,” said Nigel Morris, QED’s managing partner and co-founder. “If hourly workers get access to what they’ve already earned, rather than wait till the end of the month, they can manage their cash flows much better.”

 

Read more – www.pitchbook.com

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Project Denab

Acquisition Targets – Facilities Management and Logistics Sectors UK.

We are currently working on several ‘live’ briefs for our Client.

They are looking to make additions to the twelve companies which currently make up their Group and are now benchmarking potential targets for their next phase of planned growth.

Timescales from initial contact to completing in full on deals has been as quick as 4 weeks, but an average timeframe is 4 months.

They aim to complete on acquisitions before the end of August 2021, have the experience and expertise to support and grow business, can supply evidence of companies they have already acquired and provide proof of funds. Their acquisitions brief focuses on:

  • Loss of income and trading profits due to Covid 19 to be ‘added back’ to the financial accounts
  • Building a group of companies to gain a competitive edge
  • Future profits as a basis for valuation and return on investment
  • Flexible deal structure and handover period to meet your needs
  • Protecting the skills and goodwill that you already have in place

Our role is to identify the suitability of companies based upon their brief, protect the confidentiality of both parties, enter first stage negotiations, and assist their internal acquisitions’ team in achieving a successful completion.

Contact Olivia@achieve-corporation.com for further details

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Sophisticated Pressure Vessel Manufacturer – Tier 1 Supplier to Pharmaceutical Sector

Client – Vesseltec UK Ltd – Sophisticated Pressure Vessel Manufacturer. Tier 1 Supplier to Pharmaceutical Sector.

Instruction – Disposal of business to trade buyer.

Role – Review market opportunities, benchmarked possible share price, source trade buyers based on management culture and ethos. Generate sealed bids. Manage all sale process through to Completion.

Result – 3 trade buyers through to final bidding. Secured final offers from Tower Growth Management LLP. Sale completed and Vesseltec Ltd added to the portfolio of nine engineering companies that form part of TGM Ltd.

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KKR snaps up UK infrastructure investor John Laing in £2bn deal

John Laing board to unanimously recommend KKR’s offer to shareholders to take firm private.

The private-equity firm KKR has agreed to buy the UK infrastructure investor John Laing, which has stakes in Alder Hey children’s hospital in Liverpool and a retirement homebuilding project with McCarthy & Stone, in a deal valued at about £2bn.

The takeover values the London-listed firm at 403p a share, which represents a 27% premium on the closing price of John Laing stock on 5 May, the day before it confirmed it was in talks with KKR.

John Laing has invested in more than 150 projects and businesses since it was founded, across a range of sectors including transport and energy.

The firm, which was floated in February 2015, owns assets including schools, hospitals and infrastructure predominantly in the US and Australia as well as in Europe.

The investor was involved in the 2013 redevelopment of Alder Hey, which was funded through a private finance initiative, and as a result still holds a 40% stake in the hospital.

John Laing said its board intended to unanimously recommend KKR’s offer to its shareholders to take the firm private, adding that it represented a fair and reasonable value for the company.

KKR has also proposed a £175m cash injection into John Laing’s pension fund, accompanied by a further £50m in 18 months.

John Laing’s shares rose by 11% in morning trading on Wednesday, to 402p, just below the offer price.

 

Read More – www.theguardian.com

 

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Sony Music buys UK podcast producer Somethin’ Else

Sony Music is latest after Spotify, Amazon and Apple to try to cash in on boom in audio listening.

Sony Music has acquired the UK’s largest independent podcast producer, Somethin’ Else, which makes David Tennant’s interview series and The Sun King, David Dimbleby’s deep dive into the life of Rupert Murdoch.

Home to artists from Beyoncé and AC/DC to Dolly Parton, Sony is using the acquisition to spearhead the launch of a new global podcast division.

“Our new global podcast division is key to our plans for a fast-paced expansion in the market, diversifying our creative abilities and providing a home for exciting content that will benefit millions of podcast lovers around the world,” said Dennis Kooker, the president of global digital business and US sales at Sony Music Entertainment, the Sony subsidiary that struck the deal.

Companies ranging from Spotify and Amazon to Apple have been snapping up now increasingly scarce prime podcast producers and platforms to cash in on a boom in audio listening and diversify away from a reliance on music streaming.

Read More – www.theguardian.com

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Buyout of AOL, Yahoo signals PE’s biggest bet on digital media

Apollo Global Management has for years wanted to become a major player in the media world. The firm finally got its wish Monday.

After days of speculation, Apollo has agreed to acquire a 90% stake in Verizon’s portfolio of digital news sites, including Yahoo and AOL, from Verizon for about $5 billion.

The deal marks private equity’s biggest bet yet on the embattled digital media industry, which has struggled to compete with Google and Facebook for a share of the digital advertising market. And it puts Apollo, an investor engulfed in controversy for the past year-plus over co-founder Leon Black’s connections to disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein, in control of a collection of news sites after spending years betting on legacy media.

“It’s a textbook Apollo deal, They’ve been interested in media space for a while, judging by their past bidding activity. Apollo probably likes the space since many other investors are avoiding it.”

Indeed, Apollo’s history with media companies dates back years. But that history hasn’t always been successful.

 

Read More – www.pitchbook.com

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Private equity brushes off past club deal woes with $34B Medline buyout

Private equity’s biggest guns are once again showing they can have record-setting buyout firepower when they work as a team.

After recently backing away from so-called club deals that bring together multiple firms, the industry now has its largest acquisition in years. The Carlyle Group and Hellman & Friedman have joined forces to acquire Medline in a deal reportedly worth around $34 billion, including debt.

The deal comes after US private equity firms amassed approximately $721 billion in dry powder as of June 30, 2020 following years of record fundraising outputs. And it may signal that club deals involving multiple buyout shops have returned after they fell out of favor following a series of high-profile flops.

The Medline deal also marks the largest private equity buyout by value in at least a decade, according to PitchBook data. So far in 2021, private equity firms have struck 13 deals in the US worth $5 billion or more, surpassing last year’s total of 11.

 

Read More – www.pitchbook.com

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Project Altair

Acquisition Opportunity

Leading Specialists in Professional Hygiene Services

An opportunity to acquire a privately owned UK Company that has positioned itself as a leading UK provider of Food Factory Hygiene including a full range of professional industrial and commercial deep cleaning services.

Established for over 14 years the business employs some 330 staffs and is augmented by a mobile division that provides environmental cleaning to industries including food factories, hospitals, housing associations and the catering trade.

Offering a selection of professional services including food factory hygiene, commercial kitchen deep cleaning, commercial periodic environmental cleaning, and ventilation deep cleaning working with innovative specialist equipment to deliver the cleaning solution required.

Secure long-standing frameworks are in place with major Blue-Chip Clients in the Food sector.

The Business model is easily scalable, and has the procedures and infrastructure to support additional sites at any location in the UK whilst maintaining overhead costs.

2020 sales have seen a turnover of £9,176,443 with a non-adjusted EBITDA of 1,008,336.

Cost of Sales in 2017 was 87.2% the cost of sales in 2020 is reduced to 84%

Gross Profit in 2017 was 12.8%, the Gross Profit for 2020 has grown to 16%

Admin expenses in 2017 of 6.3 % have now reduced to a 2020 cost of 5.7%

These figures are evidence of the Company’s efficient cost and expenses management. As profits and sales grow, residual profits could be reinvested or distributed as cash dividends. The Company will always remain profitable and cash flow positive.

Contact Olivia@achieve-corporation.com for further details.

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Project Neptune

Acquisition Opportunity

– Specialist in the manufacture and installation of bespoke joinery to the UK and Global Markets.

A rare opportunity to acquire a long-established, successful, dynamic, and privately-owned UK Company specialising in the manufacture and installation of bespoke joinery to a diverse range of companies operating in the following sectors:

  • Healthcare
  • Retail
  • Leisure
  • Corporate
  • Museum

The Business is led by a strong and experienced management team, and services a diverse blue-chip customer base across the UK and exports its finished joinery globally.

Services within the Business fall into two broad categories of High Volume and Bespoke Joinery.

The Company has a strong balance sheet – it is cash generative and has operated debt-free for the past twenty years.

2019 has seen total sales of £10,362,838 with a gross profit of £3,027,023 and an adjusted EBITDA of £1,104,335.

2020 saw a drop in sales and subsequent profits, which was directly attributed to the Covid 19 lockdown.

The current order book stands above £2,000,000, and a robust forecast is in place, which will see sales return to 2019 levels. The figures forecast are sales of £10,880,980 with a gross profit of £2,937,865 and an adjusted EBITDA of £1,090,680.

The Company is a first-class manufacturer and installer of bespoke joinery to the UK and Global Markets – committed to a growth strategy with both capacity and resource.

Highlights:

  • Lean management structure – able to continue without shareholder involvement – skilled in Company operations
  • Capability to deliver complete turnkey projects
  • Leading joinery manufacturing facility; one of the finest in the UK
  • Sophisticated logistics and supply chain management portfolio in place
  • All works completed ‘in house’, no work is subcontracted
  • Non-cyclical business model offering continuity and resourcing throughout the year

Future Opportunities:

  • Strong succession plan in place, with shareholders willing to provide a long-term consultancy period post-sale, as well as having an experienced second-tier management structure
  • Strong and growing order book currently valued at £2 Million, with orders secured globally. Making Project Neptune a significant asset to any Buyer
  • The acquisition of Project Neptune allows the acquirer to tender for a broader range of projects across many industries and gives an outlet for high-quality joinery ‘in-house.’
  • An acquirer could reduce their reliance on suppliers and offer an increased service level to their Clients by capitalising on a central production facility and expand the provision of joinery services to construction and fit-out firms, and other direct competitors
  • By acquiring Project Neptune (a business that can carry out complete turnkey projects), the acquirer can distinguish itself from its competitors, enabling complex projects to be carried out using internal staff and skilled tradespeople. This gives the benefit of complete control over programme coordination, quality, and commercial issues without engaging external subcontractors

Contact Olivia@achieve-corporation.com for further details.