Hugh Osmond snaps up power firm APR in deal worth £527m
HUGH Osmond, the entrepreneur behind Pizza Express and Punch Taverns, is to buy US temporary power provider APR energy in an $855m (£527m) deal.
Horizon Acquisition, a cash shell that Osmond floated on the alternative investment market in February 2010, announced yesterday that it will pay $395m cash and $495m in shares for a 59 per cent stake.
“We believe APR is a great investment, offering both immediate value and outstanding value for our shareholders,” said Mike Fairey, chairman of Horizon.
Demand for its services and those provided by its bigger rival Aggreko has been boosted by rising power demand in developing countries and by the recent earthquake in Japan, with both companies securing contracts with Tepco.
APR’s controlling shareholders George Soros’s Quantum Strategic Partners and former US secretary of state Madeline Albright’s Albright Capital Management, will own around 14 and 13 per cent of the share capital respectively.
Trading in Horizon shares, which closed on Friday at 950p a share, will be suspended and the stock will be renamed APR Energy on re-admission to the London Stock Exchange in September.
MEET THE ADVISER
Numis Securities is advising Horizon on its purchase of APR with Alex Ham, a managing director in corporate broking at the investment bank and broking firm, leading the team.
Ham, 28, has worked at Numis since 2005, and ran the broker’s involvement in the flotations of Horizon and Betfair last year as well as securing the 10 per cent Ocado cornerstone investor in the online grocer’s IPO fundraising.
He is currently advising Investcorp in their announced bid for Opsec.
He is also a senior adviser on corporate broking and equity capital markets to online fashion retailer Asos, global software firm Micro Focus, student accommodation group Unite and Zooplus, the German online retailer.
“Horizon has identified APR as a business with fantastic growth prospects and high returns on capital,” said Ham of the acquisition.
“Horizon’s cash will allow APR to significantly increase its fleet capacity and compete more effectively in the international temporary power market.”
Ham is joined by Stuart Skinner, also of Numis.