Three acquisitions conclude busy year for fast-expanding RSK Group

Solar power

Highly acquisitive integrated environmental, engineering and technical services business, RSK Group, has announced its latest deals which concluded a busy 2021.

The Helsby-based group has added three more companies to its ever-growing portfolio, for undisclosed sums.

The latest businesses include Cambridge-based Optisol Services, a solar farm cleaning, maintenance and civil works contractor, Non Entry Systems Limited (NESL), which designs and manufactures automated equipment for cleaning of difficult access areas at its Swansea HQ, and ATV Contract Services, a Melton Mowbray landscape and countryside management business.

These latest acquisitions, all completed before Christmas, close out another busy year for RSK, which saw the group welcome a total of 33 businesses throughout 2021, following nine in 2020.

Fuelled by a £1bn sustainability-linked financing package with Ares Management Corporation, the 2021 acquisitions helped the group transform its turnover from £537m proforma LTM (revenue adjusted for the impact of revenue earned by companies acquired during the period for the 12 months prior to the measurement date) at the end of the March 2021, to an estimated current proforma LTM turnover of £860m.

Optisol Services, NESL and ATV Contract Services all fit well with RSK’s technical services offering which supports the group’s aim of playing an active role in helping business and society meet the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals by providing comprehensive solutions to its clients.

Optisol operates in the renewable energy sector and is renowned for delivering efficient, competitive and large-scale solar farm cleaning, maintenance and civil works services across the UK. The business was established by Sam Crane and Jack Sagar in 2016 after identifying the need for reliable, safe and consistent solar cleaning and maintenance services while working in the agricultural industry.

Large scale solar production will continue to increase as the UK strives towards its target of generating 100% clean energy by 2025 and Optisol and RSK recognise the demand for cleaning, management and maintenance will increase alongside this. The business has already experienced very strong growth since its formation and holds long term contracts with several leading renewable energy operations and maintenance (O&M) businesses.

Meanwhile, NESL is at the forefront of technology in the design, manufacture and supply of automated equipment for the cleaning of bulk storage tanks, lagoons, sludge re-suspension/treatment and quantification, product movement and materials handling.

Employing 15 specialists, NESL carries out welding fabrication, machining, electrical design and installation and quality assurance – skills which will be a welcome addition to the RSK group.

Led by managing director, Darren Shipton, NESL has a wide, international client base and has supplied equipment to most corners of the world, matching specification to the relevant local standards.

The third acquisition, ATV Contract Services, is an East Midlands-based landscape and countryside management business led by Marcus Wright and Paul Hensman. The business helps to manage landscapes, habitats and ecology throughout the UK.

Alan Ryder

Alan Ryder, founder and CEO of RSK, said all the new additions offer high calibre services which are increasingly in high demand from RSK’s clients.

“The businesses share a similar culture to our own which will no doubt help to ensure that we work well together. As with most of the businesses we bring into the group, we intend to retain all things that make each of these businesses great, from leadership and workforce through to brand and ethos.”

He added: “By connecting them with the 120+ other businesses in the RSK family, we will see growth and new opportunities for all.”

Sam Crane, director of Optisol Services, said: “We knew shortly after meeting some of the leadership team at RSK that this would be a good fit for Optisol. The renewables market needs to grow significantly over the next several years and with the support of RSK I am confident that we will see continued growth of Optisol to keep up with this market demand.”

Darren Shipton, managing director of NESL, said: “I see countless opportunities for NESL now that we have joined the RSK Group and I’m excited to start progressing these and getting to know more people across the group.”

Marcus Wright, managing director of ATV Contract Services, said: “The whole team at ATV Contract Services are all really excited to join forces with RSK and become part of the agriculture, land and property management division. We’ve built fantastic relationships with our clients over the last 20 years which has led to a solid customer portfolio based on service and high quality workmanship. By joining RSK, the business will have the ability to grow far more than we could have on our own.”