Bridgepoint sells Capula in £30m secondary

Dunedin Capital Partners has backed a £30m secondary management buyout of Capula, an IT systems integrator acquired by Bridgepoint in September 2000.

Dunedin Capital Partners, a UK mid-market private equity firm, has led a £30 million (€44 million) secondary management buyout of Capula, a provider of real-time automations systems to the nuclear, power generation and utilities markets.

Bridgepoint, a European mid-market firm, sold Capula six years after buying the IT systems integrator in a £30.5 million transaction. At the time of the September 2000 buyout, Capula was known as Instem. Two years later, Bridgepoint backed Capula’s acquisition of Elan Technologies, a healthcare IT solutions provider.

Dunedin Capital Partners provided £15.6 million of equity to acquire Bridgepoint’s 70 percent stake in Capula, in addition to a £14.5 million debt facility provided by Barclays Leveraged Finance. Dunedin backed the management team led by CEO Roger Turner, who has been with the company since 1989.

Ernst & Young advised Dunedin on the acquisition, with Pinsent Mason, KPMG and Armstrong providing legal advice, financial and commercial due diligence respectively.

Bridgepoint and Dunedin Capital Partners were not immediately available for comment.

Established in 1970 and with 180 staff operating out of offices in Staffordshire, Gloucester and Cumbria, Capula provides complex software programming and systems engineering to the nuclear, power generation and utilities markets.

Dunedin said that Capula’s growth strategy will focus on expanding its presence in the nuclear and water utilities sectors where legislation is driving increased capital expenditure for infrastructure projects.

Capula is Dunedin’s second investment in 2006 after the £21 million buy-in management buyout of ETC Venues, a meeting, training and events business, in July.

So far in 2006, the Edinburgh and London-based private equity firm has sold shop front installation business Blaze Neon in a £5 million secondary buyout to Matrix Private Equity Partners; made 5.8 times its money on the sale of Calsafe Group, a UK modular building business, to Champion Enterprises of the US for £62 million; and sold UK pubs operator Celtic Inns to the Wolverhampton & Dudley Breweries for £43.6 million.