UK: Leahy takes leadership role as CD&R acquires B&M Retail stake

By Michelle Russell | 4 December 2012

Former Tesco CEO Terry Leahy will take up the post of chairman at B&M Retail after private equity firm Clayton, Dubilier & Rice acquired a majority stake in UK discount retailer.

B&M, owned by the Arora family, will continue to be managed by its existing management team. The deal will however see CD&R adviser Leahy become chairman of the company.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

B&M operates around 300 stores in the north of England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales, and has sales in excess of GBP1bn, CD&R said.

"B&M is a fantastic retail format in the growing discount sector," said David Novak, a partner at CD&R. "We are pleased to have the opportunity to partner with the management team to accelerate the growth of the business by widening its market presence outside of the UK, and continue to build the B&M brand. We believe the value based general merchandise retail model could have significant appeal in overseas markets."

Clayton Dubilier & Rice was, in October, reported to be leading a bid for the salty snacks business of United Biscuits.

Show the press release

Clayton Dubilier & Rice To Acquire Significant Stake in Leading UK Variety Retailer, B&M Retail

LONDON and NEW YORK, Dec. 3, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Clayton, Dubilier & Rice, LLC ("CD&R") and B&M Retail Ltd ("B&M" or the "Company") today announced that funds managed by CD&R have agreed to acquire a significant stake in the parent company of B&M. Terms were not disclosed.

B&M, owned by the Arora family, is one of the UK's leading discount retailers with stores situated in the north of England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales. B&M will continue to be managed by its existing management team. Since its acquisition in 2005, the business has grown rapidly to over 300 stores, with sales in excess of £1 billion and employing over 10,000 people. Its stores attract over two million customers per week with a value offer of food and non-food products.

"B&M is a fantastic retail format in the growing discount sector," said David Novak, a Partner at CD&R. "We are pleased to have the opportunity to partner with the management team to accelerate the growth of the business by widening its market presence outside of the UK, and continue to build the B&M brand. We believe the value based general merchandise retail model could have significant appeal in overseas markets."

Simon, Bobby and Robin Arora, owners of B&M Retail, commented: "We are delighted to have the opportunity to partner with CD&R. We are proud of the success we have had with B&M since acquiring it in 2005, but recognise that we need a partner to bring the expertise to ensure the business fulfils its overseas potential. CD&R has very relevant retail sector experience and a strong track record of working in partnership with management teams to successfully grow businesses across different territories."

Don Gogel, Chairman and CEO of CD&R commented: "The Aroras are exceptional entrepreneurs who have done a great job building a business that is trusted and supported by loyal customers. B&M has excellent opportunities for growth and we look forward to working with them to help the Company realize its prospects."

Sir Terry Leahy, a senior operating adviser at CD&R, will serve as Chairman. He was previously the chief executive of Tesco plc. He will be joined on the board by Vindi Banga, the former President of Foods, Home and Personal Care and member of the Unilever plc Executive Board. Marco Herbst and David Novak of CD&R will also join the Board.

CD&R was advised by Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Clifford Chance, Debevoise & Plimpton, Ernst & Young and Bain & Co. B&M was advised by Rothschild, Allen & Overy, PWC and OC&C.

About B&M Established in 1976, B&M Retail Ltd trades from stores across the UK. B&M sells top branded products at low prices to customers across the UK and Northern Ireland.

B&M's first store was in Blackpool, Lancashire, and has grown to over 300 stores and employs over 10,000 staff, with its headquarters in Liverpool.

About Clayton, Dubilier & Rice Founded in 1978, Clayton, Dubilier & Rice is a private equity firm with an investment strategy predicated on producing financial returns through building stronger, more profitable businesses. Since inception, CD&R has managed the investment of over

 

Original source: Clayton Dubilier & Rice

Sectors: Mergers & acquisitions, Retail

Companies: Tesco, United Biscuits

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