Arbuthnot Commercial ABL supports Wheelwright with MBO and finance facility


Arbuthnot Commercial ABL

Arbuthnot Commercial Asset Based Lending (ABL) has supported the management buyout (MBO) of the UK’s leading wheel and automotive aftermarket distributors, Wheelwright Ltd (“Wheelwright”), for an undisclosed sum.

The team at Arbuthnot Commercial ABL structured a comprehensive asset-based lending facility, comprising a revolving receivables finance line and additional term loans.

The facility will be used to support management in making the acquisition, while providing additional working capital to enable the business to maximise its market-leading product range.

Originally established in 1980, Kent-based Wheelwright offers a European-wide logistics and delivery service from its 14 national and two international facilities. The business is a former subsidiary of the Alcar Group.

The MBO was led by David McMillan, Sales Director, Thierry Hooker, Operations Director, and Malcolm Thomson, incoming Finance Director. Andrew Thomson, Partner at HMT LLP and Ricky Collis, Senior Manager, advised the management team. Caple provided an additional cash flow loan facility.

Thierry Hooker, Operations Director at Wheelwright Ltd, said: 

“Arbuthnot Commercial ABL not only supported our team with the MBO, but they have also provided us with the capacity to deliver on our immediate growth opportunities.

They took the time to truly understand our business and provided first rate senior level support.

We would not hesitate in recommending Arbuthnot as a funding partner and look forward to working with them in the future as we look to capitalise on a fragmented market.”

Ricky Collis, Senior Manager at HMT LLP, commented:

“Completing a transaction in the automotive sector with COVID-19 restrictions is a challenge, but the MBO of Wheelwright proves that good deals can still happen in the current climate when driven by industry leading management teams with the backing of the right funders.

What I like most about Arbuthnot Commercial ABL is that the team has the experience to get to grips with the dynamics of a business and its sector extremely quickly.

Instead of being checklist driven, they are quick, efficient, and helpful, and work very well to project timescales.

They are a great funding partner to work with and offer the right combination of products to provide the level of funding required for an event-driven deal.”

 Andrew Rutherford, Commercial Director at Arbuthnot Commercial ABL, said:

“This was an interesting deal to work on; we were delighted to partner with Andrew and Ricky at HMT on this transaction and we very much look forward to supporting Dave, Thierry and Malcolm as they develop their ambitious organic and inorganic growth strategy.

With a market leading offering of internally developed brands in the aftermarket sector, including Europe’s leading space saver wheel, Road Hero, Wheelwright is at an exciting stage of its growth trajectory.”