Plastics specialist PAR bought by FTSE 100 group in £38m deal

PAR Group is the main sponsor of Preston North End

FTSE 100 group Diploma has bought a North West plastics specialist in a £38m deal.

PAR Group, which is headquartered in Chorley with a second site in Heywood, Greater Manchester, supplies specialist seals and gaskets into a broad range of end markets.

The £13m-turnover business has operated for more than 40 years and employs around 70 people. It has generated pre-tax profits of £4.6m in each of its last two financial years.

It will now become part of Diploma’s R&G Fluid Power Group.

Its chief executive Johnny Thomson said: “PAR has an excellent customer-proposition with clear value-add. It’s a fantastic addition to R&G: building capability, further diversifying the customer base, and expanding end markets.”

Diploma is a £1.2bn-turnover international value-add distribution group focused on three sectors – controls, seals and life sciences. It has made nine acquisitions in the past two years.

PAR will form part of Diploma’s UK Aftermarket business in the seals sector. Diploma said the returns in the first year of acquisition will be “well in excess of our cost of capital”.

PAR, which started life as Preston Asbestos and Rubber, has made two acquisitions of its own recently.

It bought Birmingham business Mountford Rubber & Plastics in December 2021 and Guildford-based Aquarius Plastics in March 2023. On both occasions it shut the closed the sites and moved the work to its Northern locations.

Under the terms of the deal, as with all R&G businesses, PAR will continue to operate under its current brand and existing locations with the same commitment to customers and colleagues.

The PAR directors will continue to lead the PAR business and work with their new colleagues at R&G to help develop and integrate PAR with R&Gs existing plastics and rubber businesses.

Dean Curtis

Dean Curtis, corporate finance director at Beever and Struthers, who advised on the deal said: “PAR is a longstanding client of Beever and Struthers, the shareholders have built a successful business and achieved substantial year-on-year growth and profitability.   Having advised PAR on various acquisitions over the years, it’s been a pleasure to have advised the shareholders.

“PAR’s expertise, customer proposition and reputation complement and enhance R&Gs existing capabilities, it’s a fantastic addition to the R&G Group.  We look forward to seeing the business grow and flourish as part of the larger Group.”

The team at Beever and Struthers was led by corporate finance director Dean Curtis and executive partner Caroline Monk, with support from corporate finance manager Patrick Wilson, tax partner Ann Bibby and tax manager Simon Barratt.

Legal advice was provided by Napthens, led by corporate partner Robert Dobson and senior associate solicitor Craig Whittingham.

Stevens & Bolton provided legal advice to R&G and Diploma PLC, the team being led by corporate partner Joe Bedford and managing associate Krishna Patel, with support from associate Ulugbek Gomes-Pessoa. Eight Advisory provided financial and tax due diligence, the team being led by partner Daniel Parsons.

Beever and Struthers previously advised PAR on its acquisitions of Guildford-based Aquarius Plastics Ltd in 2023 and Birmingham firm Mountford Rubber and Plastics Ltd in 2022.

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