ABN sells off Volution cable division

ABN AMRO Capital sells Volution’s cable management unit to fund bolt-on acquisitions for ventilation business

ABN AMRO Capital has sold off the cable management division of its portfolio company Volution, as it looks to concentrate on its flourishing ventilation business.

Lloyds Development Capital, the private equity arm of Lloyds TSB, has bought the division. Terms were not disclosed, but sources close to the deal said LDC paid about £50 million (€75 million; $97 million) for the unit, which represented about 25 percent of Volution’s turnover and employs about 220 people.

LDC is backing the cable unit’s current management team in the buyout, and plans to grow the business both organically and through acquisitions. The rest of Volution’s management team, which secured a stake of about 30% in last year’s buyout, will remain with the ventilation business.

ABN bought Volution, which makes the market-leading Vent-Axia fans, in July 2006 from Montagu Private Equity in a deal thought to be worth about £160 million. It was always planning to demerge the cable management division, which had relatively few synergies with the ventilation business.

ABN plans to use the proceeds from the sale to fund further acquisitions, as it looks to consolidate a fragmented market. Paul Southwell, managing partner of ABN’s UK buyout team, said: “The return made will put us in a better position to acquire other businesses that will enhance Volution’s already excellent market position.”