Alcuin and Indigo Back AVM in Secondary Buyout

UK-based AVM, a provider of visual communications solutions which operates at the forefront of the unified communications market has been bought out by growth capital investor Alcuin Capital with further funding provided by Indigo Capital. CEO Edward Cook led the transaction which provides an exit for AVM Chairman Sandy MacPherson and venture capital investor Octopus Investments, which backed the MBO of AVM in 2006. Livingstone Partners’ media tech team advised the vendors.


Livingstone Partners’ media:tech team has advised the vendors on a secondary management buy-out (MBO) of AVM, the UK’s leading provider of visual communications solutions which operates at the forefront of the unified communications market.

AVM was established in 1990 and is the leading visual communications systems integrator in the UK. The company provides a complete range of video conferencing and audio visual services to the private and public sectors and its services include supporting complex IP-based video networks, managing and maintaining telepresence suites, providing audio-conferencing, digital signage and equipping training rooms and presentation areas with state-of-the art technology.

AVM has grown both organically and through acquisition with revenues of circa £40 million to 30 June 2012.

The buy-out, led by CEO Edward Cook sees growth capital investor Alcuin Capital entering as lead investor with further funding provided by Indigo Capital to support continued growth and potentially further acquisitions. The transaction provides an exit for AVM Chairman Sandy MacPherson and venture capital investor Octopus Investments, which backed the MBO of AVM in 2006.

Edward Cook, CEO of AVM, commented “This transaction gives us the added fire power to take AVM to the next level. I want to thank Livingstone for guiding us through the transaction and introducing Alcuin who we look forward to working with.”

Adrian Lurie, Partner at Alcuin, said, “We are delighted to be investing alongside Ed and his team to support the continuing success of AVM. We were pleased to work with the Livingstone team to successfully conclude this complex transaction.”
Jane Vinson, a director of Octopus’ ventures team, added “AVM has been a strong investment for Octopus, delivering year-on-year growth. Livingstone managed a well-run, multi-party process achieving a great result for us and the business going forward.”

The Livingstone team was led by Eleanor Wilkinson, with support from Simon Cooper. Wilkinson concluded “AVM has the right management team and market position to continue to lead this growth sector. It has been a pleasure to work with the team and deliver a deal that works for the exiting shareholders and on going management team alike.”

The completion of the AVM MBO represents Livingstone’s fourth tech deal in less than 12 months highlighting the sector’s continued attraction for trade and private equity alike.

Notes to editors:

About Livingstone Partners LLP

Livingstone Partners LLP is an international mergers and acquisitions (‘M&A’) firm with offices in London, Chicago, Düsseldorf, Madrid and Beijing that is focused on mid-market deals. Its 80 staff completed 43 deals worth £1.6bn in 2011.

For more information, please visit our website

About AVM

Established in 1990, AVM has sales offices throughout the UK. The company carries out the full design, installation and support of visual communications and complex audio visual systems. From interactive training rooms and video conferencing over multiple sites to control systems that seamlessly merge your audio visual resources, AVM has a solution.

For more information, please visit our website

About Octopus Investments

Octopus Investments, founded in 2000, is a leading investment specialist. We offer innovative core and satellite investment solutions to UK investors, and a wide range of funding options for exceptional companies.

Our core investments include a discretionary management service and a range of multi-manager multi-asset OEICs. These are complemented by our range of satellite solutions, including venture capital trusts, enterprise investment schemes and inheritance tax products. Each product has been designed to solve specific problems faced by financial advisers and their clients.

Our funding solutions cover the entire capital structure, from equity through mezzanine to senior debt, and we seek out outstanding management teams in unlisted companies with whom we can partner.

Octopus has built its business around three core pillars: customer led innovation, excellence in customer service and the quality of our people. We employ more than 200 people and currently have more than £2.5 billion in assets under management.

Octopus has won a number of awards for its products and customer service. We have twice been voted one of the best 100 SMEs to work for by the Sunday Times, and we are one of only two fund management companies to be AAA rated by financial advisers for customer service.

For more information, please visit our website

About Alcuin Partners

Alcuin Capital Partners (“Alcuin”) specialises in development capital and growth capital investments in the UK lower middle market. Typical investment range is between £2 and £10 million per transaction, although strong funding relationships allow it to invest more if required. Investment focus is on buyouts, buy-ins and recapitalisations, as well as providing growth or development capital.

Alcuin is a supportive, lead investor, with a strong preference for owner-managed businesses. It invests in both minority and majority transactions, focussing on working with excellent management teams. Managing a relatively small portfolio, it is able to offer advice and support in areas including international expansion, acquisitions, re-financing and exit.

Alcuin has a 20 year track record of successfully investing in this market segment and are currently investing The Third Alcuin Fund, which has commitments of approximately £100m.