px Group, the infrastructure solutions business based in Stockton-on-Tees, which operates and maintains some of the UK’s largest industrial facilities including the world-renowned Saltend Chemicals Park, has been acquired by Aksiom Services Group (a partnership between Ara Partners and the Aksiom Group) and px Group management.
px Group will continue to be led by its current senior management team and chairman, assuring complete continuity for px Group’s employees, customers, and other stakeholders. Dublin-based venture capital business Aksiom Group and Ara Partners, a private equity firm specialising in industrial decarbonisation investments, will set the foundations for px Group’s ambitious growth strategy.
The transaction facilitates the exit of private equity firm Bluewater from px Group’s shareholder base, following a highly successful five-year partnership for both parties. px Group has grown by 27 per cent on average annually with the backing of Bluewater, which acquired the business in 2016.
Graeme Sword, founding partner at Bluewater, said: “I am pleased that this growth has been achieved during one of the most challenging economic climates in memory, impacted by the Coronavirus.”
Geoff Holmes, CEO of px Group, said: “From a company perspective, working with Bluewater has really demonstrated the advantages of private equity. The Bluewater team provided invaluable strategic oversight, sector understanding and support throughout our journey. px Group is now in great shape and well-positioned for future growth across energy, industrials, and the energy transition.
“For decades, px Group has provided safe and reliable operations to major infrastructure asset owners across the energy and industrial sectors. Working in partnership with our customers to achieve continuous improvements in safety, efficiency and performance, providing material benefits to all stakeholders and the environment. Today, as the company looks across the UK and Europe to potential new markets, we are encouraged by our unprecedented activity levels and available opportunities for px Group to be a leading participant in delivering and operating the next generation of energy and industrial assets for our current and new customers.
“The Aksiom Services Group’s combination of Ara’s focus on investing in industrial decarbonisation and Aksiom’s expertise in developing high-growth technical services companies is a perfect fit for our strategy.”
Charles Cherington, Managing Partner at Ara, said, “px Group’s well-proven technical, project management and operations expertise through the full lifecycle of complex infrastructure assets creates a unique, high-value opportunity for an investor like Ara, with a portfolio of companies developing and building low carbon industrial infrastructure. Reducing carbon intensity across all of industry – both the large installed base of existing assets and those assets to be built over the coming decades – is core to Ara’s mission, and px Group delivers that objective exceptionally well.”
John Hammill, Corporate Partner at Square One Law said, “It was great to work with px Group and the management team on this transaction and to see a successful exit from Bluewater following its acquisition of px Group in 2016, which we also supported. I look forward to seeing how px Group develops further over the next few years.”