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MB Aerospace Management Team Completes MBO

19 May 2007

The management team of MB Aerospace Ltd and MB Faber Ltd, two of the main subsidiary groups of the Lanarkshire-based engineering contractor Motherwell Bridge, has announced that it has completed a management buyout.

MB Aerospace Ltd and MB Faber Ltd have been sold to new company MB Aerospace Holdings Ltd which will be headed by Craig Gallagher, CEO of MB Aerospace Ltd, and his financial director Gordon Kerr.

The deal was backed by private equity firm Lloyds TSB Development Capital which has taken a majority stake in the business. The transaction was supported by senior debt provided by The Royal Bank of Scotland.

MB Aerospace Ltd employs over 110 staff across two sites in Motherwell and Burnley and specialises in the manufacture, test and assembly of defence and commercial aerospace systems and components.  Headquartered in Leyland, Lancashire, MB Faber employs 75 staff and specialises in mechanical handling solutions and jig & tool design.

Craig Gallagher, chief executive officer of MB Aerospace Holdings Ltd, said: "MB Aerospace has had a remarkable journey under Motherwell Bridge. When I came on board as managing director in 2003 the company was on the brink of collapse but with the support of a committed workforce, we have spent the past four years turning things around. We are now trading strongly, our order book is very healthy and I feel the time is now right for MB Aerospace and MB Faber to come together and follow their own path within the aerospace and precision engineering sectors.

MB Faber has had a similar journey and with a strong reputation for design, its recent growth in the aerospace sector will be further enhanced in the new model.

“Our strategy now will be to develop our service offering to complement the growing opportunities within the sector, namely supporting aftermarket components and platforms in late product life in addition to those platforms requiring specialist engineering design in early phase product introduction.

“This particular area will require sustained investment in engineering resources and skills development and this will enable us to strengthen the services that we offer to our key customers. We will also continue to invest in staff development as it is our employees who are our greatest asset..

s exceptionally strong relationships with the leading names in the aerospace industry.

“We’re backing an experienced and motivated management team which has the expertise to further enhance these relationships and deliver significant growth in the business.

“Going forward we’ll be working closely with the team to ensure the company is well placed to capitalise on a market which is growing strongly.”

Commenting on the deal, Kenny Stewart, Managing Director, Corporate & Structured Finance for The Royal Bank of Scotland in Scotland said: “We have a long-standing relationship with Craig and the management team and have been aware of their strategy for the company for some time.

“Therefore we have been able to structure our debt funding to meet exactly their requirements, working closely with Lloyds TSB Development Capital to ensure a smooth transaction which leaves the companies in a strong position to take advantage of the business opportunities that exist in their marketplace.”