The Manchester office of national law firm Shoosmiths has advised NVM Private Equity (NVM) on their £4.5m investment of development capital into Love Energy Savings (LES), a Bolton-based comparison and procurement service.
LES helps small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) identify the optimal gas and electricity supplier and tariff to suit their needs and manages any switch of energy supplier on behalf of the SME. Established in 2007 to target the non-domestic energy user market, LES now has a portfolio of almost 16,000 live client contracts.
NVM's investment in LES has been made to support the company to achieve its growth plans. LES' management team is planning to grow the business organically over the next five years. It is anticipated that many more SME's will look to switch their gas and energy providers in the coming years and there are clear signs that SMEs are increasingly using the services offered by intermediaries such as LES.
Manchester-based Shoosmiths corporate partner, Kieran Toal, led the deal with support from senior associate Damien Brown.
Andy Leach, the lead investment partner at NVM on the transaction, said: "Shoosmiths were instrumental in ensuring that our investment progressed smoothly to completion. The deal team's refreshingly commercial and solution-oriented approach has won them many friends amongst the parties to this transaction".
"We are delighted that this advice has enabled us to support a young and vibrant business such as LES in the achievement of their ambitious growth plans. Phil and his team have built a great business in a relatively short period based on a market leading IT platform, where the culture of customer service and transparency is at the heart of the way they operate.
"The business energy market is too complex for most small businesses to properly understand and LES, with access to a wide range of tariffs and an intimate understanding of the market combined with an ability to take away the administrative burden that can go with switching, is perfectly placed to improve the ability of SMEs to buy energy better."
Kieran Toal said: "LES is clearly going from strength to strength and with a growing portfolio of SME customers and strong customer service ethos, as a trusted partner of SMEs, LES is well placed to benefit from the shift by SMEs towards switching their gas and electricity providers.
"We are delighted to have acted for NVM on this transaction and again demonstrates the progress Shoosmiths is making in the Manchester and wider north-west market for acting on private equity transactions and specifically acting for private equity funders. We wish NVM and LES all the best in their partnership."
Shoosmiths' corporate team advises public and private companies, management teams, investors and debt providers through the business life cycle. Shoosmiths work with businesses from start-up and first round finance through to mergers and acquisitions, MBO and MBI transactions, development funding and on exits, by way of sale, listing or private equity investment.
The national corporate team is ranked in second place by deal volume in Experian's UK Deal Review and Advisor League Table and has recently won Law Firm of the Year at the M&A Awards 2015.