Gresham Private Equity offloads Just Trays to Maven Capital Partners as it enters wind-down

Just Trays has sourced a new private equity backer in the form of Maven Capital Partners and closed a secondary management buy-out.

Having been backed by Gresham Private Equity since a management buy-out (MBO) in 2006, shower tray and accessories business Just Trays has secured new funding.

Maven Capital Partners has stepped in as a new investor, through and undisclosed transaction, and is backing the Just Trays management team, led by Paul Crossley.

Exiting supporter Gresham Private Equity recently revealed that problems in raising a new fund meant that it was going into wind-down and focusing on exiting its portfolio interests.

Founded in 1998 and with its main facility in Leeds, Just Trays sells direct to trade partners in the construction and housing markets.

Crossley says that the timing was right for a new financial partner to support the next stage of growth for Just Trays – centred on new routes to market, overseas expansion and acquisitions.

‘We are delighted to have found a financial partner in Maven who understand our ambitions and are supportive of UK manufacturing businesses,’ he adds.

‘The Maven team is local and it was important that we fund a partner both accessible and with experience of helping growth businesses.’

Maven Capital Partners has made a number of new investments during 2014, starting with high performance tyre manufacturer DMACK which received £3.5 million.

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Maven investment director Ryan Bevington comments, ‘Just Trays is a great UK manufacturing business which received financial backing before the recession, but saw its core market decline from 2008 as the recession impacted on housing and construction markets.

‘It is a credit to the management team that the business has remained profitable and cash-generative throughout this period and we believe it is now well placed to capitalise on its position.’

Hunter Ruthven

Bernard Williamson

Hunter was the Editor for from 2012 to 2014, before moving on to Caspian Media Ltd to be Editor of Real Business.