MBO completed of Currie European Transport GroupKirstie Aitken, 2nd February 2019
Stephen Turner has completed the management buy-out of the Currie European Transport Group (recently rebranded Currie Solutions). Having been with the business most of his working life, Stephen has achieved the long term ambition of owning the company, originally founded by Norman Currie. “I am delighted, as someone who’s lived in Dumfriesshire man and boy, it’s been a huge part of my life working with Curries, and to finally be in the position to acquire the company is a real privilege. My vision is simply to ensure that we become the business of choice for our customers and staff to work with and in doing so we enable the growth of business in Scotland, the rest of the UK and Europe”.
The MBO was prompted by the business working through its plan for the years ahead “Tom Barrie (owner) and I, felt it was the right time for him and the right time myself to make this change, more importantly, we both believed it was important for the business. As Managing Director, I have been fortunate enough to lead the business since 2010 and I am now ready to take this great business on its next exciting journey.
Whilst the transport sector has been a difficult space for many to operate in over the last number of years, Stephen believes the sector is ready for change and evolution, with consolidation and collaboration for haulage businesses to get back into a profitable and more sustained business environment. “Like many, our results have not been easy on the eye in recent years. Most transport businesses have had challenges through increasing fixed costs and variable costs, without the margin increase in revenue to offset. Importantly though, we are not sitting around to wait on the next set of results, we have a strategy that is centred around the consolidation and collaboration that needs to take place in the market – and we will drive forward with that strategy”
And what of the future, “I won’t make any bold statements, instead, like we have always done, Curries will continue to make decisions that are best for the Group. With the support of our financing partners, we are now in a position to make more progressive decisions that support our vision. We see an opportunity to expand our footprint in Scotland pretty quickly and beyond that there are wider, longer term plans for us to work towards”.
Stephen also acknowledges the support he has had during the process from Robert Stewart of Generis Advisory and Murray Jack of Addleshaw Goddard. “Robert has been invaluable to me throughout the MBO process and his understanding of situations like this has been key in delivering our deal. Murray and his team at Addleshaw Goddard did a fantastic job, seamlessly taking care of all legal matters for us which included advising on the complexities of re-banking and buying our foreign subsidiaries”