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Alchemy to buy Parkdean for £135m

Following Blackstone’s recent £205m offer for Center Parcs, the UK holiday parks sector has seen more private equity interest, with Alchemy poised to buy Parkdean Holidays for £135m.

Listed UK holiday parks operator Parkdean Holidays has accepted a 270.5 pence per share offer from London-based private equity firm Alchemy Partners.
 
The offer, which values Parkdean at around £135.3 million, was made through acquisition vehicle PD Parks Group. Alchemy was advised on the transaction by UBS, while Charles Stanley advised Parkdean.
 
Alchemy has currently received acceptances for its offer from approximately 31.4 percent of shareholders in Parkdean Holidays.
 
According to Parkdean, the offer represents a 22.1 percent premium to its closing price of 221.5 pence on 11 October 2005, the last business day prior to the announcement of talks between Parkdean and Alchemy. The offer represents a 20.7 percent premium to the average closing price of 224.2 pence per Parkdean share over the six months prior to the beginning of the offer period.
 
Parkdean shares closed at end of trading on Friday 17 March on 268 pence per share.
 
Parkdean joined the London Stock Exchange’s Alternative Investment Market (AIM) in May 2002 with a market capitalisation of £32.4 million, having raised £25.6 million at an issue price of 100 pence per share.
 
The Newcastle-upon-Tyne-based firm was established in 1999 following the management buyout of Trecco Bay holiday park. According to the company, Parkdean is the fourth-largest holiday park operator in the UK, operating 20 static caravan-based self-catering holiday parks located in Scotland, Wales, South West England and East Anglia. The business also receives income from holiday hire, on-park retail outlets, owners’ site fee income and caravan holiday home sales.
 
In the financial year ended 31 October 2005, Parkdean reported turnover of £84.2 million and profit before tax of £9.2 million.
 
Earlier this month, the directors of UK holiday village operator Center Parcs accepted an 80 pence per share offer from New York-based LBO firm The Blackstone Group, valuing the business at £205 million.