Blume acquired by Sun Capital as it ramps up ambitious growth plans
Blume has been acquired by Sun Capital Partners, one of the world’s longest established private equity houses.
The deal will give Blume greater scale and reach, and will put the business on track to achieve £30 million turnover in 2023. It will also enable Blume to further invest in its marketing operations to extend its service offerings, improve efficiencies and deliver greater commercial returns for its panel firms.
About Sun Capital
Since 1995, Sun Capital Partners (Sun) has invested in more than 475 companies worldwide with revenues in excess of $50 billion. In October 2021, the firm bought Northwest-based Fletchers Solicitors, one of the largest medical negligence and personal injury practices in the UK, in a move to drive consolidation in the legal services sector.
Once the transaction completes, Blume will join an expanded Fletchers Group and take responsibility for Fletchers’ consumer operations including The Medical Law Network, a marketing network for medical negligence law firms owned by Fletchers and its customer-facing brand, Patient Claim Line.
Leadership team to remain in place
The latest announcement comes off the back of Blume completing its first significant acquisition of Online Legal, and follows a record year of growth with the business doubling in headcount and turnover. A funding boost earlier this year from Rockpool Investments, who will now exit the business, has helped Blume develop new product offers, expand its technology capabilities and recruit a strong multi-skilled team.
Following the acquisition, Blume Group’s Chief Executive Dez Derry will continue to lead Blume and join a wider Group leadership team, which will also include Blume’s Chief Operating Officer Steve Evans and Fletchers’ Chief Marketing Officer Alex Kenny.
Wider portfolio of products and services
Derry says: “We are thrilled to be partnering with Sun and Fletchers who share our vision, ambition and appetite for innovation. This is a landmark transaction for Blume which will take the business to the next level, giving us the ability to rapidly grow our foundation in partnership with a very strong capital partner.
“The added firepower provided by Sun’s investment, and the opportunity for Blume to build on Fletchers’ Patient Claim Line brand and its panel of law firms is a compelling proposition for the market. It will allow us to continue to help our clients prosper by providing more choice and flexibility through a wider portfolio of products and services. We have built an exceptional team and this deal will open up some new and exciting opportunities. The future for Blume is brighter than it has ever been, and I would like to thank everyone who has played a part in this fantastic development.”
Successful track record of organic growth and acquisitions
Alex Wyndham, Principal at Sun European Partners says: “Dez and his management team have built a great business through a successful track record of organic growth and acquisitions, and we look forward to working with them to further maximise Blume’s potential.
“The transformation of the legal landscape in recent times makes this an exciting time for M&A. Areas that are insulated from recession such as personal injury and medical negligence means legal services is an attractive proposition, and this acquisition gives us a strong foothold in the sector. We are focused on seeking out and nurturing promising scale-ups such as Blume to help build the industries of the future and our expectation is that we will be completing more deals in this sector during the next 18 months.”
UK’s leading medical negligence customer acquisition specialist
Peter Haden, CEO of Fletchers Group says: “The acquisition of Blume brings a high quality, growth-focused business to the Group and creates the UK’s leading medical negligence customer acquisition specialist in the UK.
“While our legal practice will operate as a separate entity, we are two highly complementary teams and big champions of the benefits that technology can bring to the sector, both as suppliers to law firms and to improve our service to clients. We are looking forward to working with Dez and Steve to support Blume’s growth, and to accelerate its market presence by leveraging our brands and customer acquisition expertise. In addition, Fletchers will continue to invest in growing our legal practice, with a focus on Serious Personal Injury, Medical Negligence and Court of Protection.”
The deal is subject to approval from the Financial Conduct Authority.
About Sun Capital
Sun Capital Partners, Inc. is a global private equity firm focused on partnering with outstanding management teams to accelerate value creation. Since 1995, Sun Capital has invested in more than 475 companies worldwide with revenues in excess of $50 billion across a broad range of industries and transaction structure. For more information visit www.suncappart.com.
About Fletchers Group
Established in 1987, Fletchers Group is one of the largest medical negligence and personal injury practices in the UK, employing over 500 people from offices in Southport and Manchester. The Group was acquired by Sun Capital in October 2021, and, under the leadership of CEO Peter Haden, has since completed a string of deals including Minton Morrill in August, Cycling SOS in May and a partnership with Cycling UK. For more information visit www.fletcherssolicitors.co.uk.