Investment Completion: Doree Bonner

News: Investment News | 13 January 2020

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Leading UK relocations and storage business secures £ multi-million debt finance package from Connection Capital as it pursues growth strategy

Well-established brand Doree Bonner turns to private capital to refinance debt facilities
Private investors benefit from high-yielding, secured structure with minority equity stake
One of the UK’s leading relocations and storage businesses, Doree Bonner Holdings Limited, has secured a £ multi-million debt finance package from Connection Capital, the specialist private client investment business.

The package will enable Doree Bonner to refinance its existing senior secured debt facilities, and provide working and growth capital as it pursues a value-enhancing acquisition strategy, with several targets already identified.

Connection Capital says that the deal highlights that SMEs are increasingly considering private capital as a suitable provider for their loan financing needs, and that demand from private investors and family offices for direct debt investments, which provide regular income, continue to grow.

Connection Capital’s innovative, private debt offering funds financing requirements of £3-10million, to provide small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) with a flexible alternative to bank lending or equity investment. Loans can be tailored to fit the company’s specific requirements. For Doree Bonner, the facility is structured with a bullet repayment after four years, to allow the company to invest cash generated in growth, rather than spending it on capital repayments.

Connection Capital clients benefit from financing a high-yielding, low leveraged loan instrument, which is designed to pay a 10% per annum cash coupon at regular intervals, and is secured against a large proportion of the business’ assets. In addition, Connection Capital clients will also take a minority equity stake in the business, providing its clients with additional returns potential if the business exceeds its management’s growth forecasts.

Doree Bonner was established more than 25 years ago when two of the UK’s oldest regional Removals and Storage businesses merged and over the years it has successfully integrated a number of acquisitions. Based in Dartford, Kent, it now employs 200 staff across 10 warehouse hubs around the country. A member of FIDI, the global alliance of professional international moving and relocation companies, Doree Bonner is now run by Managing Director Jason Herbert, who joined from Pickfords in 2017, where he was a board member and Director of International Services.

It serves businesses (including insurers), local authorities and consumers across the UK and internationally, offering office, commercial and domestic relocation (for private and council/social housing clients); storage; and corporate disaster recovery services, as well as a range of additional products such as insurance and crate hire. By offering such a diverse suite of services to a wide range of clients, the business is well-placed to mitigate any seasonal or cyclical swings in different areas of its market.

Doug Wilson, Investment Director at Connection Capital, says, “More and more SMEs are seeing private capital as an attractive alternative to bank lending.”

“Not only are small and mid-sized businesses still struggling to access bank loans more than a decade after the credit crunch, on top of that many find that, if offered, it is on terms that just don’t suit their needs. Our flexible model addresses both those issues, assessing opportunities on a case-by-case basis and structuring debt packages in a way that supports business strategy.”

“Doree Bonner is an established, successful, well-managed business with a broad-based service offering, a diversified customer base and good growth prospects, so we are delighted to be able to offer this opportunity to our clients.”

“Private investors and family offices are increasingly interested in private debt as a portfolio diversifier. In today’s continuing low interest rate environment, yield is particularly high on the list of priorities. Not only does this deal offer a high yielding, secured loan note, it has the added advantage of an equity “kicker” to further enhance returns potential.”