Case Study: Cirencester Fabrication Services Ltd.

Cirencester Fabrication Services Ltd (CFS) is an established metalwork company that overcame the challenges posed by the pandemic to find the right buyer. Established businesses in technical fields can attract a wide range of buyers with different types of experience. The right buyer could end up being an experienced manager who is new to the sector or a technical expert who will be running their own business for the first time. When we find the right buyer, Business Partnership can offer different kinds of support depending on the needs and experience of the new owner. We ended up finding the perfect match for this company in a first-time owner who knows the sector well. 

About the Business 

CFS is an established metalwork business that holds a strong position in its market. The focus of the business has been general fabrication work, largely in mild steel, aluminium, and stainless-steel. The product range includes bike shelters, gates, outdoor furniture, vehicle protectors or bars, and barriers such as bollards. 

CFS has built up to become experts in their field, utilising a range of different techniques. A typical product would be formed through tube manipulation, but the company also fabricates in flat, beam, and hollow sections, producing a wide range of products for a varied customer base. 

The company was in its 11th year of trading when the owners decided to sell. It was running in a modern factory unit that belonged to the owners and was under the stewardship of a Works Director who would be happy to continue in the business if needed. CFS therefore presented an extremely attractive opportunity for buyers from a range of different backgrounds. 

Decision to Sell 

The business was put up for sale because the main shareholders were in their seventies and ready to retire. The largest shareholder had already become a silent partner while the other main shareholder was only working part time. Although other members of the family held shares, they did not work in the business. The family felt it was time to fully retire from the business and pass it on to a new owner who could play a more active part in running it. The main owners would then be able to enjoy their retirement without the responsibilities of business ownership. 

The Sales Strategy

Business Partnership was appointed as the sole selling agent for CFS. John Hatt was the regional partner who took charge of the sale as he covers the Gloucestershire area. John has a background in manufacturing as well as plenty of experience as a broker, so he was very aware of how valuable this company would be for the right buyer. 

The biggest challenge during this sale was the COVID-19 pandemic, which forced us to rethink our usual practices. We had to be a lot more flexible in our interactions with potential buyers in order to offer socially distanced viewings and ensure everyone stayed safe. 

Despite the pandemic, there was a lot of interest in this sale from a wide range of different buyers. We were in contact with everyone from trade buyers to experienced metalworkers who wanted to start working for themselves. Some potential buyers had years of experience in the field, while others were new to the sector and ready to take advantage of the experience of the existing team at Cirencester Fabrication Services Ltd. 

The buyer ended up being a first-time business owner who brought a lot of technical expertise, but who needed our support during the sales process. We were able to put the buyer in touch with a specialised business finance house to enable him to access the additional finance he needed to buy the company. 

The new owner will be returning to his roots in fabrication work and taking on the challenge of running his own company for the first time, while the previous owners will be able to enjoy their retirement while knowing that the company they built has been left in good hands. 

If you are thinking of selling your business and need some support from professional business sales brokers contact us here.