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Sentio advises management on Palatine PE investment in ZyroFisher

Sentio Partners has advised the management team in relation to Palatine Private Equity‘s investment in ZyroFisher, the leading cycling parts and accessories distributor, alongside mid-market private equity investor LDC, as both firms provide the financial firepower to support the business’s continued expansion strategy.

ZyroFisher was originally formed in April 2016, when LDC backed the management buyout of Zyro and supported the simultaneous acquisition of Fisher Outdoor Leisure. Based in Darlington, the business supplies major retailers such as Wiggle, Halfords and Evans as well as over 2,000 independents, providing a route to market for dozens of specialist brands with best in class sales, marketing, distribution and customer services support.

Over the past 18 months, the team has successfully integrated the two separate companies and now represents the largest portfolio of market leading brands in the UK and Ireland. It has attracted new brands, developed its proprietary apparel brand Altura, expanded its distribution capabilities and strengthened its senior team. The business now has annual sales in excess of £75m and has built an even stronger platform for future growth.

Matthew Barker, CEO of ZyroFisher, said: “This is an exciting development for the business, our retail customers, our brand partners and our team. Bringing on board additional investment now means we can accelerate our expansion plan and have an even stronger platform for future growth. LDC’s financial, strategic and operational support over the 18 months has been invaluable in the successful integration of Zyro and Fisher, allowing us to capitalise on the combined strengths of the businesses and invest for long-term growth. Having such a supportive partner on board during the next phase of our journey alongside Palatine gives us the confidence to scale up our plans.”

Ed Fazakerley, Partner at Palatine Private Equity, said: “ZyroFisher is a business we have been aware of for some time and have been impressed with the growth achieved over the last 18 months. We are excited by the further growth opportunities identified and are delighted to be backing Matt and the management team on the next stage of the company’s development.”

John Garner, Head of LDC in Yorkshire and the North East led the original investment. He added: “We’re excited to be continuing our support for the business and helping the team fulfil its ambitions. Since we backed the business in 2016, ZyroFisher has significantly outperformed its business plan. Bringing on board additional investment enables us to bring forward plans to capitalise on its growth opportunities. The deal is another example of our appetite to support companies over the long-term with the right funding structure to help them fulfil their potential.”

Management were advised by Ian Marwood, Bridie Robinson and Matt Tollefson at Sentio, alongside Freeths (legal) and Saffery Champness (tax).

Additional debt funding was provided by LGT European Capital alongside its Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking facilities.