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Watkins Hire Limited in private equity deal

Livingstone’s industrial sector team has announced the sale of Watkins Hire Limited to its management team, led by CEO Paul O’Kelly, backed by private equity house Baird Capital.

Baird has invested a total of £10.1m, providing additional growth capital to allow the Company to expand its rental fleet and accelerate its growth.

Livingstone advised the shareholders of Watkins Hire on the transaction.

Watkins Hire is an independent provider of temperature control equipment rental services, and is the only rental company in the UK to offer a complete range of heating and cooling equipment, with a market leading fleet of bespoke assets, including heaters, steam and water boilers, air handlers and chillers.

The company has a blue-chip client base spread across a diverse range of industries, including energy, utilities, manufacturing, healthcare, retail, FM, construction and events. It operates through five UK depots which have supported its growth into lucrative national contracts.

Commenting on the transaction, James Benfield, managing director at Baird Capital, said: “We are delighted to be partnering with the Watkins management team and, through our strong sector knowledge and resources, to help the company build on its reputation as a trusted provider of quality temperature control services.”

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