Hg reinvests in business services provider Citation

Business

European tech specialist Hg has reinvested in human resources and legal services provider Citation Group after agreeing to sell a controlling interest in the UK company to KKR in August.

Citation provides legal and human resources support for small- and medium-sized enterprises across the UK from offices in Wilmslow, Norwich, Belfast and Glasgow. It has 900 employees and annual revenues of about £65m. The company, founded in 1996, was acquired by Hg in 2016 from mid-market firm ECI Partners for £185m. Since then, the business has doubled its customer base to about 40,000 SMEs.

Hg said it acted on an option to acquire a co-controlling stake with KKR in the sale agreement it announced this summer. Under that deal, Hg said it would realise around £25.8m of estimated cash proceeds from the sale.

Chris Morris, chief executive of the Citation Group, said: “To attract the backing of two world-class investors is a huge achievement for the business and is a testament to the hard work from the Citation team over many years.

“Not only does it demonstrate conviction in the company’s trajectory, but this combination of scale with specialist know-how in our sectors means that Citation has never been in a better position to offer best-in-class services as a trusted partner to our UK SME clients.”

Nick Jordan and Joris Van Gool, partners at Hg, added: “Citation is very simply a high-quality business, demonstrated by about 20 years of year-on-year growth.”

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