Barclays backs Nightfreight MBO

Barclays Private Equity has closed its second deal in a week with the management buy-out of UK-based delivery company Nightfreight.

Barclays Private Equity is backing Ewenny, a company formed by the management of Nightfreight, to make a buyout offer. The company will pay 69 pence per Nightfreight share, valuing the existing issued share capital of Nightfreight at approximately £35.1m. The directors of Ewenny are Robert Kelly, Paul Watson and John Miller, all of whom are currently senior managers of the Nightfreight Group, and Craig Russell, the finance director of Nightfreight.

Steven Silvester, who is leading the transaction for Barclays Private Equity, said: “The offer represents an exciting new phase in Nightfreight's development and I believe that there will be significant opportunities for the group to capitalise on in the future.”

The Offer price is at a premium of 54.2 per cent over the closing middle market price of 44.75 pence per Nightfreight share on 14 December 2000 and a premium of 10.4 per cent over the closing middle market price of 62.5 pence per Nightfreight Share on 26 January 2001. These dates represent the last business day prior to the announcement that the company was in talks, which might lead to an offer being made, and the last business day prior to the date of this announcement, respectively.

Nightfreight Shareholders will be offered a loan note alternative in respect of the cash consideration to which they are entitled under the offer.

Last week, Barclays Private Equity backed the E170m management buy-in of Clydesdale Financial Services, the consumer credit division of Next plc.