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AURELIUS acquires BT Fleet Solutions from BT Group Plc

Press release   •   Aug 05, 2019 09:00 BST

  • Acquisition of the UK’s number one commercial fleet management business delivering a comprehensive suite of services to blue chip customers, via its national network
  • Carve out of non-core division from FTSE 100 BT Group plc including long term partnership agreement to continue management of BT’s own fleet
  • Further demonstration of BT’s ongoing transformation programme and of AURELIUS’ status as a leader in complex divestment processes

AURELIUS Equity Opportunities SE & Co. KGaA (ISIN DE000A0JK2A8) (“AURELIUS”) is to acquire industry leading end-to-end commercial fleet management operator, BT Fleet Solutions from BT Group Plc, it was announced today. Both parties have agreed not to disclose the purchase price and the transaction is due to complete in H2 2019.

Headquartered in Solihull, BT Fleet Solutions offers a comprehensive suite of fleet management services across all stages of the vehicle life cycle, through its network of 65 in-house garages, 500 partner facilities and 50+ mobile technicians. Established in 2002, BT Fleet Solutions employs around 950 staff around the UK, and manages more than 80,000 vehicles for over 26 blue chip customers across diversified industries. The latest published statutory accounts for 2017/18 for BT Fleet Ltd show revenues of £209.5m and its industry leading position leaves it well placed to capture the high levels of growth available in the UK’s fleet management market.

The divestment of BT Fleet Solutions aligns with BT’s ongoing transformation programme and strategy of focusing on converged connectivity and services, with further investments in both its fixed and mobile networks via programmes such as full fibre and 5G.

This deal represents another example of AURELIUS’ specialism in complex divestment processes. In the coming months, AURELIUS’ operational task force will support BT Fleet Solutions in executing a carve out from BT, ensuring a seamless continuation of the company’s day to day operations, whilst working to position the business as an independent entity. The company is expected to be rebranded within the next 12 months.

Going forward, AURELIUS will work with BT Fleet Solutions’ existing management team to maintain its market-leading position and drive growth for the business. This will be delivered through a range of initiatives, including operational improvement, investment in key business areas – such as heavy goods vehicles, accident management and vehicle funding - and the continued delivery of excellent customer service to clients, including former parent company, BT, and its legally separate Openreach business. AURELIUS will also work with management to identify customer and product expansion opportunities, both organically and through acquisition.

Dr. Dirk Markus, Group-CEO and Chairman of the Executive Board of AURELIUS, commented: “This acquisition is a further example of AURELIUS’ specialism in acquiring non-core divisions that have been carved out of large corporates, and are in need of operational support to transform them into standalone, sustainable organisations. BT Fleet Solutions is a strong business with a high calibre customer base. We look forward to working with management to ensure a smooth transition in the coming months, positioning the company as an independent entity that is ready to capture the significant growth opportunity available in the UK market.

“This is another exciting development for AURELIUS this year, following our recent sale of Solidus Solutions, our largest exit to date. This deal is a demonstration of our continued interest in the UK market, which presents a number of compelling opportunities for us as a result of the ongoing economic and political uncertainty that has arisen out of Brexit.”

Gerry McQuade, CEO of BT’s Enterprise unit, said: “The acquisition of BT Fleet Solutions by Aurelius is an exciting and significant step forward in its development and will deliver for its customers, people and the BT Group. Over the past five years, our Fleet business has grown into a multi-award winning market leader in the sector. The unrivalled expertise and experience of its people in managing and maintaining complex fleets has been key to this success.

“With BT’s renewed focus on investing in the best fixed and mobile networks in the UK, and with BT Fleet Solutions well positioned to achieve further growth, the time is right for the business to find a new home. AURELIUS is ideally placed to support the next phase of BT Fleet Solutions’ development and deliver new services to its customers. I’d like to thank our colleagues in BT Fleet Solutions for all they have done for the business and the wider BT Group and wish them every success for the future.”

AURELIUS was advised by Deloitte (M&A), Mayer Brown (Legal) and KPMG (Tax). BT was advised on this transaction by Lazard (M&A) and Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner (Legal).

Ends

ABOUT AURELIUS

AURELIUS Group is a pan-European investment group with offices in Munich, London, Stockholm, Madrid and Amsterdam. Since it was founded in 2006, AURELIUS has grown from a local turnaround investor to an international multi-asset manager.

AURELIUS Equity Opportunities SE & Co. KGaA (ISIN: DE000A0JK2A8, ticker symbol: AR4) represents the listed entity within the AURELIUS Group that focuses on investing in special and turnaround situations and mid-market transaction opportunities in a broad range of industries. AURELIUS Equity Opportunities currently has 21 portfolio companies located across Europe which employ around 15,000 people and generate annual revenues of approx. than EUR 3.8 billion. The shares of AURELIUS Equity Opportunities are traded on all German stock exchanges. The company’s market capitalization is approximately EUR 1.2 billion (as of June 2019).

The AURELIUS Group also operates in the areas of growth capital, real estate opportunities and debt. AURELIUS Growth Capital invests in successor solutions and spin-offs from larger mid-sized companies and corporate groups. AURELIUS Real Estate Opportunities focuses on real estate investments, particularly in projects with operational improvement potential, the value of which can be increased in the long-term by means of active management. AURELIUS Finance Company is an alternative direct lender, focused on providing debt solutions to small and mid-market firms across Europe. With its group charity AURELIUS Refugee Initiative e.V., AURELIUS provides comprehensive support for refugees on their way towards a better life.

To find out more, visit www.aureliusinvest.de.

About BT

BT’s purpose is to use the power of communications to make a better world. It is one of the world’s leading providers of communications services and solutions, serving customers in 180 countries. Its principal activities include the provision of networked IT services globally; local, national and international telecommunications services to its customers for use at home, at work and on the move; broadband, TV and internet products and services; and converged fixed-mobile products and services. BT consists of four customer-facing units: Consumer, Enterprise, Global and Openreach.

For the year ended 31 March 2019, BT Group’s reported revenue was £23,428m with reported profit before taxation of £2,666m.

British Telecommunications plc (BT) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BT Group plc and encompasses virtually all businesses and assets of the BT Group. BT Group plc is listed on stock exchanges in London and New York.

For more information, visit www.btplc.com