2020-09/darren-boocock

The firm’s first deal saw it advise iconic Tamworth-based theme park Drayton Manor on its sale to attractions giant Looping Group. Drayton Manor’s trading had been significantly impacted by the impact of Storm Dennis and COVID-19, and the successful sale to a strategic acquirer saw more than 600 jobs saved.

The team also provided financial advice to site and people protection specialist Orbis Protect on its acquisition of Optosafe, a provider of 360 degree CCTV towers. This was the first acquisition that Orbis has made since receiving private equity investment from NorthEdge Capital in 2018 – a transaction that Deloitte advised NorthEdge on.

Most recently, Deloitte’s Midlands office advised ultrafast fibre broadband provider The 4th Utility on its £25m investment from infrastructure investor DIF Capital Partners. Deloitte introduced DIF to the transaction and provided lead advisory, due diligence and tax support. The funding will enable the business to scale up its rollout of commercial grade fibre broadband  to more residential properties and capitalise on the rising demand for ultrafast broadband at a time when reliance on broadband is at an all-time high as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Led by partner Darren Boocock, Deloitte’s 16-strong Midlands corporate finance team has been part of some of the region’s most high profile transactions in recent years. Key deals include advising Norman Hay on the disposal of its trading divisions to Quaker Houghton Chemical Corporation for £80 million, Rigby Group on the sale of FluidOne to Livingbridge, Sygnature Discovery on its private equity investment, Phoenix Equity Partners on its investment in Forest Holidays and advising on the sale of Strutt & Parker (Farms). 

Darren Boocock, partner at Deloitte in the Midlands, said:

“These transactions highlight that appetite for high quality assets remains strong, despite the exceptionally challenging backdrop and the ongoing economic uncertainty. Deals are there to be done and clients are turning to advisers with the capabilities required to navigate them through such unprecedented circumstances. 

“The variety of these transactions, completed over the last two weeks, is testament to the strength and adaptability of our Midlands team, working through the pandemic to deliver an accelerated sale, a strategic bolt-on acquisition and a significant fund raise across the leisure, business services and TMT sectors.”