Bridgepoint buys £750m vehicle rental company from fellow private equity firm HgCapital

William Turvill
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Zenith, headquartered in Leeds, has a fleet of around 85,000 vehicles (Source: Getty)

The UK’s largest vehicle rental company has been traded between two private equity firms in a £750m deal.

Bridgepoint this morning announced the acquisition of Leeds-based Zenith from HgCapital.

Zenith, which also has operations in Solihull and Wokingham, has more than 500 employees and a fleet of around 85,000 vehicles.

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HgCapital initially invested in Leasedrive in December 2013 before the company merged with Zenith in March 2014.

“We thank Hg for their contribution and welcome Bridgepoint as our new partner,” said Tim Buchan, chief executive of the firm.

“They share our ambitions to consolidate and grow our position as the number one corporate fleet provider in the UK and to transform Zenith into a broader based business.”

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Bridgepoint said debt financing for the transaction would be provided by HSBC, RBS and Lloyds. The private equity firm was advised on the deal by HSBC and Investec on corporate finance and White & Case on legal.

“Zenith is already best-in-class with a proven business model that has had an unbroken track record of growth over a long period,” said Emma Watford, a Bridgepoint partner.

“It benefits from an exceptional management team and, with them, we believe that the business can continue its impressive growth trajectory through its continued focus on customer service, technology and targeted acquisition activity.”

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