ABN Amro makes way for GI Partners at Park Resorts

The Bank of Scotland provided the debt for the buyout and will be supporting the growth of the business with acquisition facilities.

Park Resorts Group, a UK-based caravan park, was established after GB Holiday Parks was acquired by ABN Amro Capital in November 2004 for £105m. Less than a month later the private equity house acquired Park Resorts from Close Brothers Private Equity for £165m and merged the two businesses under the Park Resorts brand. CBPE retained a 10% minority stake and a seat on the board of the expanded group for £10m, which has returned another £24m to the group with this sale to GI Partners.

Park Resorts has caravan parks located in coastal areas across the UK which offer entertainment, retail facilities, bars, restaurants, swimming pools and amusements.

Under ABN Amro’s ownership and with an investment of £35m, the group has created over 400 new pitches and benefited from very significant capex investment and grown EBITDA by 43%.

Jonathan Bourn and Dominic Collier coordinated the investment and exit on behalf of ABN AMRO Capital and will resign from the board of Park Resorts as a result of the deal.

Brad Altberger, managing director of GI Partners, said: “We are delighted with this acquisition which clearly meets our strategy of investing in asset-intensive businesses with significant upside potential. With an experienced management team, a solid operational platform and a very strong banking partner in the Bank of Scotland, we believe Park Resorts is well positioned to exploit consolidation and lead transformation in the industry.”

This acquisition will for the third major platform investment in Europe of GI Partners in its second fund. Its other UK platforms are the Cambian Group, a UK-based specialist care provider for children and adults with mental illness and the Orchid group, a UK-based managed pub retailer.