Greenaway Scott recently advised on the acquistion of App UK by Gofal Enterpris Ltd (GEL)

Friday 23rd December 2016

GEL was set up in 2010 and is the trading subsidiary of Welsh mental health. GEL has bought Caerphilly-based cleaning firm APP UK, for an undisclosed figure. APP UK was established in 1983 by Julie Nobes, who will remain with the business as it scales up its commercial cleaning and maintenance services. She said: "This is an exciting time for APP UK. We are looking forward to working together with GEL to create a company that excels in the service sector, creating a unique customer experience."

The acquisition is a first for GEL who operate a portfolio of socially responsible businesses that invest profits back into the charity. GEL is targeting a £1.8 million turnover for 2016/2017 which will be achieved through continued organic growth and its acquisition strategy. The acquisition of APP UK complements GEL's existing social business, PS Facilities Management, which provides cleaning, building and maintenance services to organisations across south Wales, including Flexicare Medical Services, Celtic Horizons, Valleys 2 Coast, Trakcel, and DVS Ltd. The move comes after GEL announced its plans last year to undertake a series of acquisitions to strengthen its position in the market and generate alternative income streams for Gofal.

Matthew Cole, Director of business development at Gofal, welcomed the industry-leading move. He said: "We are delighted that Gofal Enterprise Ltd has been able to take this exciting step forward in acquiring APP UK. We feel that this is a confident move in the right direction for GEL and welcome the opportunity to work alongside Julie, who has established a great business in APP over the last thirty years. With the aim of leading social enterprise innovation in Wales by running a portfolio of socially profitable businesses, this is the first of a series of acquisitions that we aim to complete over the coming months."

The acquisition also provided 'firsts' for GEL's funding partners - Finance Wales and Social Investment Cymru (SIC) at Wales Council For Voluntary Action (WCVA). For Finance Wales it is the first time the investment company has funded a charity acquisition, whilst for SIC it is the first time funding a buy-out on this scale.

To facilitate the growth plans for GEL following the acquisition of APP UK, there have been two new appointments to the GEL board. Human Resource specialist Kate Matthew and finance expert Andrew Morris have been appointed as directors of the charity. This strengthens the board's experience and their particular expertise will support GEL's future plans.

GEL was advised by Nigel Greenaway of leading corporate law firm Greenaway Scott. Nigel Greenaway of Greenaway Scott, said: "It is exciting to be part of GEL's growth. As a long term client we are delighted to be involved in these first time deals with such significance to the sector".