Endless completes first public to private deal with acquisition of office2office plc

EVO Business Supplies Limited, a company owned by funds managed by Endless LLP, has successfully completed the acquisition of office 2 office plc (o2o), the listed business supplies and services Group with operating locations in Norwich, Manchester and Basingstoke. The deal, which was originally announced on 21 August 2014, has now been approved by o2o shareholders, sanctioned by the Court and has received approval from the Competition and Market Authority (CMA).

The EVO Management team, led by Group CEO Robert Baldrey, will now begin the process of detailed planning to merge o2o with Vasanta Group, the Sheffield based business supplies Group which Endless has owned since 2009.   The new £660m revenue Group will be one of the largest multi-channel distributors of business supplies and services in its industry with unparalleled reach and experience. The successful VOW Wholesale business will gain access to the industry leading o2o Truline final mile delivery service, giving the Group a fleet of around 300 vehicles. Supplies Team and Banner will merge to create a £220m contract stationery business focused on serving large corporate and public sector customers.

Robert Baldrey, EVO Group CEO commented: “We are delighted to have completed the acquisition and are extremely excited about the opportunities offered by the creation of the merged Group. We immediately gain significant scale, which is so critical in this consolidating market, and an industry leading final mile delivery service. We will also offer an unmatched breadth of product range and depth of experience in the market. I am convinced that we can drive the merged Group on to even more success than we have separately enjoyed these past few years.”

Mathew Deering, Investment Director at Endless LLP, commented, “Vasanta has been achieving strong growth organically, as evidenced by its recent inclusion in the Grant Thornton Sunday Times Top Track 250.   However we have long held an ambition to undertake a transformational business combination for Vasanta that would enable it to be a key player in consolidation in the sector.  O2o was always our preferred candidate because the strategy, customers and capabilities of the two businesses fit together fantastically well.  We are confident they will have a bright future together as a combined Group.”

Endless and EVO received corporate finance, tax and pensions advice from Deloitte (Byron Griffin, David Smith, Sue Holmes) and legal advice on the transaction and competition matters from Walker Morris (Debbie Jackson, Richard Naish, Peter Considine, Trudy Feaster-Gee).  Alvarez & Marsal (Mike Trenouth, Adam McLelland) provided financial and operational due diligence services to EVO.  O2o was advised by Rothschild (Stephen Griffiths, Matt Jowett), with legal advice provided by Macfarlanes.