Buyout firms circle for tool hire company

Ollie Gordon
A NUMBER of buyout firms are circling over HSS as a bid deadline looms today for the British tool hire firm, it emerged yesterday.

HSS’ owner, private equity firm Exponent, is reportedly interested in floating the firm. However, the subdued IPO market of late has convinced the investment specialist to gauge buyer appetite for the London-head­quart­ered HSS.

Exponent has recruited JP Morgan to test the buyer market, with the bank having reportedly set a bid deadline for Monday.

It is believed any possible deal for HSS could be worth around £600m.

If a deal does eventually go through, it would see HSS swap private equity owners for the fourth time in its history.

In 2003, the Davis Service Group sold the company to buyout firm 3i for £310m. Four years later, hedge fund Och Ziff and Archie Norman’s Aurigo Management bought the firm, with Exponent taking it off their hands in 2012.

Exponent declined to comment when contacted by City A.M..

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