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  • Status: Realised
  • Date: 2013–2018
  • Sectors:
    • Financial Services & Insurance
    • Business & Technology Services
  • Location: UK
  • Buy & Build: 4

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Sovereign partnered with the Kindertons management team to more than double the size of the company, creating the UK's leading specialist provider of automotive accident management and mobility solutions to the motor industry.

Investment Background

Kindertons was founded in 1993 and by 2012, the business was operating from 11 depots across the UK, with a fleet of more than 2,000 vehicles.

As the business continued to see increased demand for its services, founder Shaun Ellison had ambitious expansion plans. He started to look for an outside investor with a track record of successfully developing and expanding business support services companies. He was also looking for an investment partner to help him with acquisitions in a fragmented market characterised by a large number of small players.

In 2013, Sovereign backed the management team to grow the business both organically and through carefully selected acquisitions. 

Value Creation

  • Introduced a new Chair, CEO and Finance Director to bolster the board and enable smooth succession planning
  • Completed four strategic acquisitions to diversify the service offering: motorbike specialist Plantec in 2013, taxi credit hire expert Sovereign Automotive in 2016, niche credit hire provider Platinum Assistance in 2017, and specialist accident management provider Crusader Assistance in 2018
  • Developed the Group to become a full-service provider of accident management solutions through its five group companies and other affiliations nationwide
  • More than doubled its fleet to 5,300 vehicles with a particular focus on higher-margin prestige and specialist vehicles, 4x4s, taxis and motorbikes
  • More than doubled the number of employees from 450 to over 1,000

The Kindertons Growth Story

With Sovereign's support, the business became one of the largest credit hire organisations in the UK, managing the full claims process on behalf of insurers, insurance brokers, motor dealers, garages and bodyshops. This was as well as providing replacement vehicles and managing the recovery, repair and storage of damaged vehicles. 

The company was sold in May 2018 to ExamWorks, a market-leading service provider to the insurance, legal and healthcare sectors backed by Leonard Green & Partners.

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In their own words

Sovereign delivered exactly what they said they would at the time of the MBO in 2013. It has been an enjoyable journey since then made easier with the level of support and help Sovereign have provided over that time. I look forward to seeing the business continue to develop over future years.

Shaun Ellison / Founder

Kindertons Awards

The British Insurance Awards 2017 Winner