3i exit Joyce-Loebl

Joyce-Loebl, a UK-based company that supplies technology solutions to the transport and defence industries, has been sold by 3i and its management team to Screen, a provider of security and communications systems.

3i, the major shareholder, acquired its interest in the company in April 1997 from NatWest Ventures (now Bridgepoint Capital), which invested in Joyce-Loebl’s 1992 management buyout. Following a financial restructuring in July 1999, Joyce-Loebl Ltd, the operating company, came under the ownership of Joyce-Loebl Group Ltd, a holding company, the shareholders of which were 3i and the company’s management team.

Screen will pay £3.25 million for the company, financed by the placement of shares worth £2.5 million. The deal includes the repayment of existing bank debt. Screen specialises in software, wireless and video technologies. Joyce-Loebl is the company’s third and largest acquisition this year, after buying Pentyre, a specialist software developer and the Civil Systems Division of BAE SYSTEMS.

Joyce-Loebl has been operating since 1952. Its two main areas of business are the transport and defence industries. The company provides CCTV and electronic information systems for trains and encryption and communication technologies for military use. In the 12 months preceding July 2001, the company generated profits of £400,000 on revenues of £8.2 million.