Shoosmiths has advised private equity investor LDC on its £13 million minority investment into Paladone, one of the UK's market leading designers and suppliers of giftware products, to assist in the acceleration of its international growth.
Headquartered in Brighton, Paladone specialises in the design, development and wholesale supply of licensed and own brand gifting products. Paladone has established strategic license partnerships with leading global brands including Walt Disney, Warner Brothers, Star Wars and Nintendo. In addition Paladone has its own label brands such as Purple Donkey and Scott & Lawson.
LDC's funding will be used to facilitate Paladone's expansion into the US market following demand for its products from retail giants including Kohl's and Target. However, growth is not just US driven. It is also targeting growth in Australia, Asia and Europe, as well as investing in its online ecosystem to help increase revenues generated from its website.
With a catalogue of more than 800 products, and offices in Los Angeles and Hong Kong, Paladone generated revenues of more than £30million in its latest financial year, with 60% of its sales being international.
LDC continues to back ambitious management teams from UK-based companies seeking between £2m and £100m of equity for management buy-outs, institutional buy-outs or development capital transactions.
Aylesh Patel, investment manager at LDC, said: "Paladone has gone from strength-to-strength, and partnering with us will provide additional support and funding to continue its growth on the international stage. We were extremely pleased to have completed this deal."
Sean Wright, corporate partner at Shoosmiths, led on the deal and was assisted by corporate partner Amit Nayyar and senior associates Jason Hill and Nina Smith, as well as corporate solicitors Aleksandr Bosch and Tori Swann. In addition, assistance on the banking aspects of the transaction was provided by banking partners Rebecca Mauleverer and Linda Williams, with support from banking associate Charlotte Thomas and solicitor Sophie King.
He said: "With this investment from LDC, Paladone is set for further growth overseas, marking an exciting time for the company.
"We are a highly collaborative corporate team, with broad and deep private equity experience. LDC are a long-term client and it is a pleasure working with them, again, on growing their portfolio of investments".
Shoosmiths LLP is one of the most active UK law firms in the area of private equity and corporate M&A acting for sellers, investors and institutional funders. Nationally, the corporate team is ranked in the top four firms for deal volume for the past four years, and is also ranked top for deal volume in the South East, in the Experian MarketIQ's M&A Review.