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ASCO in Secondary Buyout

European private equity firm Doughty Hanson & Co has acquired ASCO Group, a global provider of outsourced logistics services and solutions to the oil and gas industry, from Phoenix Equity Partners. Financial details of the transaction were undisclosed.


Doughty Hanson & Co, one of the largest independent private equity firms in Europe, today announced that it is to acquire ASCO Group (ASCO), the largest global provider of outsourced logistics services and solutions to the oil and gas (O&G) industry, from Phoenix Equity Partners.

ASCO provides oilfield logistics services, co-ordinating the supply of goods destined for (and returning from) oil rigs and platforms. This includes the delivery of everything from drilling equipment to food supplies. ASCO is also involved in specialist international logistics and oilfield waste management.

The deal gives Doughty Hanson a foothold in the fast growing outsourced logistics market, an industry with significant, long term growth potential. Financial details of the transaction are not being disclosed, however the ASCO management team will be remaining with the business and reinvesting in the transaction.

John Gemmell, Principal at Doughty Hanson, said today: “ASCO is internationally recognised for its strong and reliable service capabilities and impeccable safety record. With growing demand for energy, the company is well positioned to benefit from the trend towards specialist outsourced logistics, particularly in the emerging high growth O&G markets.

“ASCO enjoys long-term relationships with a diversified client base including O&G majors as well as independent operators and service providers. It performed strongly through the downturn and we look forward to working with its experienced management to support its continued growth.”

ASCO is a strong business financially with a market leading position in its core business that is protected by substantial barriers to entry. Its strong – and defensible – position is underpinned by long-term customer relationships, brand reputation and ownership of key assets.

Billy Allan, CEO of ASCO, added: “Having Doughty Hanson behind us is fantastic news for the business and I’m looking forward to developing a strong partnership with them. Over the last 5 years ASCO has consolidated its market-leading position and it’s clear that Doughty Hanson’s aspirations and enthusiasm for our business moving forward will add significant momentum as we move into our next exciting international growth phase. With the backing of Doughty Hanson the future for our staff and customers will be exciting”

The transaction is subject to the usual regulatory requirements and is expected to close in December 2011.