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NBGIPE acquires Horizon Care

NBGI Private Equity (NBGIPE) has acquired Horizon Care, a Midlands based specialist child care provider. NBGIPE has signalled its intention to double the size of the business through acquisitions and organic growth over the next three to five years. 

Horizon Care caters for children with severe emotional and behavioural difficulties. It currently operates 13 residential care homes and three schools in the West Midlands, North West and Kent. NBGIPE has been looking to invest in the specialist children’s care market for some time, and believes Horizon Care represents a strong platform for growth as well as a great opportunity to build a leading child care business while offering Local Authorities a high quality, long-term, value for money care solution.

The existing management team, led by the Care and Operations Director, Amanda Knowles, a leading figure in the child care services market, has fostered a culture of excellence reflected in the majority of homes being rated as ‘Outstanding’ by Ofsted, the industry regulator.  Knowles has developed Horizon Care’s services around a ‘Therapeutic Care Model’, offering highly supportive care for children, in a nurturing environment with a strong emphasis on educational achievement. 
A highly experienced senior management team has been appointed to join Horizon Care comprising Thelma Turner as CEO, who brings a wealth of experience having worked in the social care sector for over 35 years, David Burton as Financial Director, who has significant experience working in the specialist care sector and Stephen Lambert who has an impressive track record of working with Private Equity growth businesses as Chairman. 

Against an environment of tightening Local Authority budgets, NBGIPE is keen to ensure the needs of these children continue to be prioritised. This will be achieved through the provision of the very best care services required by the most challenging of children, for whom fostering is not always an appropriate solution. Horizon Care aims to provide an intensive care service to encourage child development and help reduce the young person’s future reliance on care services and ease pressure on Local Authority spending.

Economic pressure has put a number of the smaller care operators at risk, providing Horizon Care the opportunity to make acquisitions and build a sustainable business offering flexible services and long-term value for money to Local Authorities. NBGIPE has a proven track record for investing in small and medium sized growth businesses and employing a supportive, proactive approach in order to develop stronger, more valuable businesses. 

Mark Owen, Belinda Berkeley and Rupert Brown worked on the transaction. The Cooperative Bank provided the debt. NBGIPE were advised by Hazlewoods LLP, CIL, KPMG Transaction Services and Pinsent Masons LLP.

Care and Operations Director, Amanda Knowles says: “With NBGIPE’s backing and the support of this very experienced management team, I am confident that Horizon Care will strengthen its position as an already well respected provider of quality therapeutic care and will go on to become a market leader in the development of complimentary services, providing creative solutions, value for money and good outcomes for young people, their families, placing authorities and government.”

Thelma Turner, CEO, says: “I am excited to be joining what is already an extremely well run business that leads its industry in care and support. We are confident that with NBGIPE’s capital and operational backing we will be able to develop a business over time that rewards all of its stakeholders and I am looking forward to a dynamic future with my new partners.”

Belinda Berkeley (pictured), who led the transaction for NBGIPE and will join the Board, says: "I am delighted to have the opportunity to work with a dedicated and passionate management team to assist in Horizon Care’s future growth, building on the business’s existing strengths and creating a leading multi-regional children’s care provider with a reputation for positively changing children’s lives whilst offering long-term value for Local Authorities".


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