Shareholders in the IT services firm Calyx have voted overwhelmingly in favour of a management buyout by chief executive Maurice Healy and his management team.
The buyout is worth €103.8m. Healy currently owns 19.3 million shares in Calyx, representing almost 28 per cent of the company. Under the terms of the buyout, he will exchange 13.5 million of these for a 30.9 per cent stake in Stornoway, the takeover vehicle. The rest will be exchanged for cash.
Stornoway is being backed by private equity group Alchemy Partners, which will hold a 59.2 per cent stake in Calyx. The remainder will be held by members of Calyx management, including chief financial officer Peter Jenkins, managing director of the Irish business Gerard Coakley, managing director of Calyx UK Andrew Mills and group business improvement director Jack Cunnane.
Shareholders will receive £1.01 per share, which represents a 24 per cent premium on the value of their holdings on 12 March, the last day of trading before the buyout was announced.
Calyx hopes the buyout will allow it to continue its strategy of aggressive expansion in the UK. In recent times the company has acquired the Matrix Group for €60m, Entropy for €4m and Mentec for €16m.
Back in early June, MD of Calyx UK Andrew Mills told Vnunet.com: "We want to become the largest single source of networking and IT services in the UK and Ireland." He added that the MBO would allow the company to be "fleeter of foot" in assessing new acquisitions.
The Calyx board received an initial approach from Healy in March this year and the buyout was approved by the directors in May. Following acceptance of the offer by the shareholders, the company will now be de-listed from London's Alternative Investment Market and Dublin's IEX exchange, with 20 July being the last day of trading
This will not be the first time that Healy has led an MBO. In 2001, Calyx itself was split out from Alphyra, which Healy founded with John Nagle in 1989.
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