Blackstone takes over UK lab firm ALcontrol

US investment firm Blackstone has taken control of British laboratory company ALcontrol, after a restructuring that saw previous owner Candover lose its investment in the soil testing firm.

Investment funds managed by GSO Capital Partners LP — bought by Blackstone in 2008 — have become ALcontrol’s new majority shareholder following the financial restructuring, ALcontrol said in a statement.

ALcontrol’s debt-laden balance sheet needed to be restructured after a downturn in the British construction industry reduced demand for its soil testing services.

As part of the restructuring deal, GSO has extended a new debt line to support the company’s liquidity, ALcontrol said.

Further details of the restructuring were not disclosed.

Private equity firm Candover acquired ALcontrol from rival Bridgepoint in 2005, backed by more than €200m of debt. But earlier this year Candover wrote down the value of its equity investment in ALcontrol by £14m to £1.6m.