Foresight supports the partial buy-out of ABL Health with £2.5m investment

MANCHESTER, 04 September 2018: Foresight Group (“Foresight”) has invested £2.5 million to support the partial buy-out of Bolton-based community healthcare and wellbeing provider ABL Health Limited (“ABL” or the “Company”).

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ABL is a provider of community healthcare and wellbeing services across the North of England. The Company was founded in 2009 by Denise Leslie and Dr Sheena Bedi, as a means of providing a range of innovative, evidence based, healthy lifestyle, behavioural change and wellbeing programmes including weight management, nutrition support and smoking cessation. The business has helped approximately 12,000 clients record weight loss in the North-West region, mainly in Manchester, St Helens, Wigan and Blackpool, and over 5,000 clients have significantly improved their mental health. On the Wirral, over 3,000 people have stopped smoking as a direct response to the ABL program in the last two years.

Considered one of the regional market leaders in clinically-led, healthcare in the community programmes, ABL operates from its own premises in Bolton, Lancashire, within the grounds of the Royal Bolton Hospital as well as satellite offices in Manchester, Stockport, the Wirral, St Helens and Hull.

Denise Leslie will continue to lead the business as CEO, with Dr Bedi becoming a non-executive director to provide strategic clinical input. Denise will be supported by a strong second tier management team and a staff base of almost 200. To help drive the growth in the business Foresight has introduced Chris Jessop as Chairman, who has held senior leadership roles in Optima Health, Nuffield Wellbeing, BUPA and AXA PPP.

Foresight’s equity investment, which was supported by a debt package from Barclays, will help with the Company’s geographic expansion, whilst widening its service offering across both the public and private sectors. ABL will continue to focus on the end results of its programmes and on delivering care to the community.

Matthew Pomroy, Investment Manager, Foresight commented: “Foresight is delighted to support ABL, a company that prides itself on its social impact within local communities. We are looking forward to working with Denise and the management team in supporting the company in achieving its growth objectives.”

Denise Leslie, CEO & co-Founder, ABL, commented: “We are excited to have partnered with Foresight and look forward to achieving the next stage of growth in the UK. Foresight has experience in the healthcare sector and have a strong reputation of growing SMEs in the North-West.”

This investment marks the tenth investment by the North-West focused Foresight Regional Investment Fund (“FRIF”), adding healthcare provision to its portfolio, alongside Med Imaging. It follows the recent investment into Epistem, a life sciences services company with headquarters in Manchester. Foresight Regional Investment Fund recently reached final close at £57 million.

ENDS

 

For further information contact:

Annabel Arrowsmith, Marketing Manager, Foresight Group aarrowsmith@foresightgroup.eu / 020 3667 8179

 

NOTES TO EDITORS:

Advisors:

Foresight’s Legal advisor:

Turner Parkinson LLP

Company’s legal advisor:

Hill Dickinson LLP

Financial due diligence:

Mazars LLP

Commercial due diligence:

Modus

Management due diligence:

Catalysis Advisory Limited

 

About Foresight Group LLP ("Foresight”):

Foresight is a leading independent infrastructure and private equity investment manager which has been managing investment funds on behalf of institutions and retail clients for more than 30 years.

Foresight has over £2.5 billion of Assets Under Management across a number of funds, including Listed Vehicles, Limited Partnerships, Enterprise Investment Schemes (EISs), Venture Capital Trusts (VCTs) and Inheritance Tax Solutions using Business Property Relief (BPR).

Foresight’s Private Equity team, comprising 20 investment professionals, pursues four discrete but complementary investment styles: Venture, Impact, Growth and Replacement Capital through its growing regional office network.  

Foresight was voted ‘Best VCT Investment Manager’ at the 2017 Growth Investor Awards, having been previously awarded ‘VCT House of the Year’ at the 2016 Unquote British Private Equity awards.

Foresight is headquartered in London with regional UK offices in Manchester, Nottingham, Milton Keynes, Leicester and Guernsey and international offices in Sydney, Rome and Seoul.

www.foresightgroup.eu