Northants furniture firm swoops for iconic British manufacturer
Northants furniture firm Ocee International has bought iconic British manufacturer Race Furniture.
Race, based in Gloucestershire, was established over 70 years ago. Founded by Ernest Race to manufacture his own designs, the company produces BA3 and the Antelope chairs.
The company works with leading architects, designers and fit out contractors, with projects including: The National Theatre, The Royal Opera House, Oxford and Cambridge Universities, Gatwick and Stansted airports and many of the major conference centres in the UK.
Its international activities include collaborating with Henning Larsen Architects to create the auditorium seating for the Royal Copenhagen Opera House and providing the seating at Newark and Houston airports in the USA. The product range encompasses standard, customised and bespoke products.
Stuart Finlator, director of Race, said: “I am very excited about the next chapter under Ocee’s ownership. With Ocee’s increasing focus on design and international markets I believe that Race will continue to flourish as a world leader in public seating and that our incredible design heritage will bring a new dimension to the Ocee brand.”
Ocee International, which has just been listed in the Sunday Times Virgin Fast Track 100 fastest growing privately owned UK companies, is the parent company of commercial furniture brands Ocee Design and Danish-based Four Design.
Alistair Gough, chief executive of Ocee International, said: “A core aspect of the Ocee International strategy is to achieve significant growth through acquisitions that diversify the market sectors or geographical areas in which the company operates. The acquisition of Race Furniture is a fantastic opportunity to have such an iconic British brand as part of the Group and to enable Ocee International to establish a strong presence within the public seating sectors of auditorium and concourse furniture.
“The existing Race team have done a tremendous job developing the strong reputation and performance of the company within the market sectors it operates. We believe that by further investing in areas such as sales, marketing and product development there are opportunities for significant growth within the UK and internationally. We are very excited to welcome Race Furniture to the Ocee International family.”
Law firm EMW acted for Ocee International.
Race was advised by Justin Sparks, partner at Springboard Corporate Finance, and legal advice was provided by Richard Knight of Harrison Clark Rickerbys.