Investment Completion - HEL Ltd

News: Investment News | 4 April 2018

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Connection Capital gets positive reaction from private investors for £5.9m investment in specialist lab equipment manufacturer

  • HEL Ltd supplies chemical, pharmaceutical, biotech blue chips and academic institutions worldwide

Connection Capital, the specialist private client investment business, has raised £5.9m from its private investor clients to invest in a specialist laboratory equipment manufacturer with a global blue chip client base.

HEL Ltd (HEL) designs and supplies a range of custom-made modular lab instruments and testing equipment. Typical products include different forms of “reaction stations” which for example screen for thermal hazards or use catalysts to test chemical reactions.

The company supplies a range of chemical, pharmaceutical, biotech and academic and research institutions worldwide, including Pfizer, GSK, Shell, Dow, MIT, the University of Cambridge and the Industrial Technology Research Institute.

HEL was established in 1987 by CEO Dr Jasbir Singh who spotted a market opportunity for appropriate hazard testing equipment to optimise safety in chemical processing while scaling up production.

Based in Borehamwood, where all its products are manufactured, it now employs 51 staff and contractors and has offices in the US, India and China.

Connection Capital’s investment will support the business in servicing global demand for its products, including in fast-growth markets such as Asia, which are typically 10-15 years behind more mature Western markets.

Luke Matthews, Investment Director at Connection Capital says, “HEL is strong business operating in an exciting niche where there are clear structural drivers of growth.”

“Its proven capability in a complex specialist sector that has high barriers to entry, and its long term relationships with a diversified blue chip client base covering a range of global markets, really appealed to our clients.”

“With no bank debt involved, the structure of the deal was also attractive to our clients. It was seen to be an investment with a lower than normal private equity risk but with strong investment fundamentals of a recurring paid interest stream from a highly cash generative business with the prospect of sharing in HEL’s growth.”

Dr Jasbir Singh says, “Having Connection Capital’s backing is a major next step for HEL. As well as delivering financial investment to help us continue our growth trajectory, they are also supporting us in a number of other important ways, including identifying a new, high quality Chairman to help drive the business forward.”

“Its approach adds real value to the investor/investee relationship making them an ideal choice of investment partner for us.”

HEL management was advised by Livingstone Partners