BidEnergy acquires Optima Energy Systems

BidEnergy, an Australian company which provides Utility Bid Expense Management Solutions in Australia, the UK and the USA, has acquired energy management software business Optima Energy Systems, a Skipton, UK-based energy management software business providing: bill validation, budgets and accruals, and tenant and self-billing.

Terms of the transaction

Bid is paying £5.4 million for Optima, plus a conditional Deferred Payment as follows:

  • £3.2 million, payable in cash upfront
  • 3.384 million Bid shares are to be issued to Optima vendors at an issue price of A$1.16 per share (~A$3.9m)
  • Shares will be subject to escrow as follows
    • 25% – 9 months from completion
    • 50% – 12 months from completion
    • 25% – 15 months from completion
  • A Deferred Payment, payable in cash, subject to Optima achieving certain performance milestones regarding revenue and costs within the year following the Completion Date
  • The “Deferred Payment” has two components:
    • A £250,000 payment on achievement of certain recurring cost reductions prior to 31 March 2021; and
    • A payment based on recurring run rate revenues achieved in the Optima business in the 12 months following completion (Bid has provisioned for a payment of F750,000, but the payment could be higher or lower).
  • Steve Wright, Optima’s Managing Director will remain engaged by Optima for at least 12 months, with the potential for a consultancy arrangement thereafter.

The transaction terms value Optima at a multiple of 2.9 times FY20 revenue.

The Optima acquisition adds a further A$3.4m1 to Bid’s annualised subscription revenue, taking overall expected group earnings to A$17.9m as at Nov. 2020

Optima was established in 1998 and has 127 full time employees. In the year to 31 March 2020 Optima had unaudited revenue of £2.18 million and was EBITDA positive (figure not disclosed). The company directly manages energy data for 51 clients, who in turn are responsible for 196,400+ meters under management across the UK. Clients are multi-site MNCs, TPI/Brokers, property management agents, etc

Bid already had a long term relationship with Optima, having provided data collection services to support a limited part of their core business.

Full transaction details here

Australia, Melbourne and UK, Yorkshire

Sovereign Capital Partners backs MBO of Utility Bidders

utility bidderPrivate Equity Buy & Build specialist Sovereign Capital Partners has backed the management buy-out of Utility Bidder, an energy broker, offering energy procurement services to UK, SME customers.  The terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Founded in 2009, and headquartered in Corby, Utility Bidder employs around 100 staff and has a sales office in Manchester. The company currently brokers energy and other utilities contracts to over 14,500 SME clients across a number of industry sectors in the UK.

sovereignUtility Bidder has performed strongly growing sales by over 40% in the current year. The team is led by an CEO, Chris Shaw; Sovereign has augmented the management team with the appointment of Mark Wood, formerly CEO of Axa UK, as non-executive Chairman. Founders James Longley and Sally Martin remain with the business, James as Utility Bidder’s MD.

Jeremy Morgan, Partner at Sovereign, said, “We are very pleased to be supporting this business and strong management team in what is a burgeoning market. Utility Bidder has already achieved tremendous success and enjoys established relationships with both its SME customer base and its energy suppliers.  We look forward to working with Chris and the team to help take this top ranked energy broker to the next stage of growth.”

UK, London & Corby, Northamptonshire

LDC backs Love Energy

LDCPrivate equity investor LDC has invested more than £25m in Love Energy Savings, an energy price comparison specialist, in a secondary buyout of the business.  The deal also marks a partial exit for NVM Private Equity, which first backed the business in September 2015.

Founded in 2007 and headquartered in Bolton, Love Energy specialises in the comparison of business energy prices. It connects small and medium-sized businesses with the UK energy supplier that offers the most appropriate gas and electricity tariff, before helping its customers to switch provider.

Under the leadership of CEO and co-founder Phil Foster, Love Energy has grown rapidly. For the financial year ending 31 December 2017 it recorded revenues of £17.4m (2016: £13.2m) and today supports more than 40,000 customers nationwide.

LDC’s investment will enable Foster and his team to accelerate their organic growth strategy. This will include the expansion of Love Energy Solutions, its corporate services division which supports major energy users across the industrial and commercial sector, further investment in its proprietary technology platforms and continued diversification into the water telecoms and insurance markets.

The transaction was led by Richard Ibbett and Jonathan Bell at LDC in Manchester, with support from Dan Gluckman at LDC in London. Jonathan and Richard will both join the board as non-executive directors.

As part of the deal, Steve Weller will also join the board as non-executive chairman. Weller has more than 10 years’ experience driving growth at technology-led businesses and was CEO of the energy switching service uSwitch until July 2018, where he worked closely with LDC during its support of the business between 2013 and 2015.

Richard Ibbett, investment director at LDC in Manchester, said: “Love Energy Savings is a fantastic business with an entrepreneurial, ambitious management team at the helm. Under Phil’s stewardship, it has continued to invest in its offering and diversify to create scale, yet the quality of service it provides to customers, suppliers and intermediaries has never wavered. In a market that is crying out for transparency this has set the business apart and with a commitment to help save businesses money there is even further opportunity for growth. We’re looking forward to partnering with Phil and his team on the next phase of their journey.”

UK, Manchester & Bolton

NUS Consulting Group acquires Enraedt in the Netherlands

EnraedtNUS Consulting Group, a global energy management solutions company, has acquired Enraedt & Partners B.V., a private company specialising in energy management, procurement and sustainability. Enraedt is based in Almere, the Netherlands.

“We are very pleased to welcome Enraedt into the NUS Consulting Group. This transaction fits our long-term strategy and commitment to growing NUS Consulting’s international coverage and service capabilities,” said Richard Soultanian, Co-President of NUS Consulting Group. As part of the transaction, Enraedt & Partners will change its name to NUS Consulting Group B.V. “Over the past decade, Enraedt has developed an excellent reputation in the Dutch energy markets. We will be combining Enraedt with our own Amsterdam office. Our goal is to create a single team that provides exceptional services and support to both NUS’s international clients as well as our local Dutch accounts,” said Allyn Rieke, General Manager for the Benelux region.

USA, Park Ridge, NJ & The Netherlands, Almere

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NUS Consulting Group acquires Viking Energy Management Posted on September 5, 2011

Utilitywise – maiden report

Utilitywise, a company that specialises in energy procurement and energy management services for businesses, has announced its first annual report since launching as a new company on AIM in June this year.

Financial highlights

  • Proforma revenue increased by 25% to £14.6 million (2011: £11.7 million)
  • Proforma EBITDA increased by 25% to £4.7 million (2011: £3.7 million)
  • Proforma PBT increased by 23% to £4.3 million (2011: £3.5 million)
  • Proforma EPS increased by 39% to 6.4p (2011: 4.6p)
  • Net cash at the year end of £8.2 million (2011: £0.2 million)
  • Maiden dividend of 1p proposed–ahead of schedule

Corporate highlights

  • Acquisition of EcoMonitoringUtility Systems Limited in January 2012
  • Acquisition of Clouds EnvironmentalConsultancy Limited (post reporting period)
  • Listing on AIM on 12 June 2012 raising £6.9million (before expenses)
  • New contracted meters grew to 20,013 at 31 July 2012 from 15,006 at 31 July 2011
  • Energy consultancy headcount increased to 188 at 31 July 2012 from 131 at 31 July 2011

Read the full report here.

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