Three’s not a crowd for Vp

A Harrogate-based equipment rental and associated services provider has spent more than £1.3 million buying three companies.


A Harrogate-based equipment rental and associated services provider has spent more than £1.3 million buying three companies.

A Harrogate-based equipment rental and associated services provider has spent more than £1.3 million buying three companies.

Vp plc has bought Underground Safety Services (USS) and Pipe Testing Accessories (PTA), both providers of services to the construction and civil engineering markets in the Republic of Ireland.

It also acquired Able Safety, a supplier of safety equipment and services as well as confined space training from its base in Knottingley, West Yorkshire.

The group acquired USS and PTA through its Vp Equipment Rental (Ireland) subsidiary for a combined €800,000 (£573,000). Of this sum, €120,000 (£86,000) is deferred depending on the acquired companies’ performances in the 19 months following completion.

USS and PTA, which are based in Tullamore, will be integrated into Vp’s Groundforce division, which offers the same services in the UK.

Able was acquired by Vp’s tool hire business, Hire Station, for £750,000 in cash and will be integrated into its safety rental business, ESS Safeforce.

Vp’s chairman, Jeremy Pilkington, said the USS and PTA acquisitions expand Groundforce’s business into the Republic of Ireland while the Able deal strengthens ESS’ operations.

USS and PTA’s combined revenues in the year to February were €600,000 (£430,000), while Able reported a £500,000 turnover in the 12 months to September 2006.

Vp, formerly Vibroplant, was established in 1954 and has been trading on the London Stock Exchange since 1973. It has evolved from a plant hire company to a service-based group providing equipment and associated services.

The group operates through six divisions: Groundforce, UK Forks, Airpac Bukom Oilfield Services, Hire Station, Torrent Trackside and TPA.

Marc Barber

Raven Connelly

Marc was editor of GrowthBusiness from 2006 to 2010. He specialised in writing about entrepreneurs, private equity and venture capital, mid-market M&A, small caps and high-growth businesses.

Related Topics

Venture capital funding