Just a year on from its investment in the MBO of UK property developer Fairview Holdings by General London Constructors, 3i is celebrating a successful exit. 3i completed the 180 pence per share offer for Fairview at the beginning of last year, valuing the company at over GBP300 million. The offer left 3i and debt provider Bank of Scotland, with an 80 per cent stake in Fairview. The transaction returned Fairview from a public to a private company.
The Bank of Scotland’s corporate division has provided further facilities to the Fairview group to help drive the business forward and at the same time provides an exit for 3i. The total funding package of GBP75 million will be used to finance further residential developments, which will be run in parallel to Fairview’s core business. The additional financial backing from the Bank of Scotland will give the group flexibility in the development of its business and enable a greater scale of activity than envisaged at the time of the MBO.
Stephen Casey, managing director of Fairview, said of the deal: “We are delighted to strengthen our relationship with the Bank of Scotland who have clearly demonstrated their commitment to the residential development sector. This further funding provides ample additional capacity for Fairview to take full advantage of new development opportunities.”
Fairview was first listed on the London Stock Exchange as a separate company in 1998. Prior to this it was a division of Hillsdown Holdings, itself a London Stock Exchange listed company. Hillsdown had bought Fairview in 1987. Fairview, which focuses on the provision of predominantly low to medium cost residential housing in the London M25 area, was established by Dennis Cope in 1961. Cope also led the public to private transaction.