Castle Harlan buys plastic pipe systems supplier Polypipe Group in £293m deal


New York-based private equity investment firm Castle Harlan has acquired the Polypipe Group, a supplier of plastic pipe systems in the UK and Ireland, for £293m from international engineering company IMI.

The Polypipe Group has approximately 2,900 employees in 39 main facilities, most of them in the UK. The company also serves niche segments of the plastic pipe and fittings markets in Germany and France.

Howard D Morgan, a senior managing director at Castle Harlan, who led the firm’s Polypipe project team, said in a statement, ‘[Polypipe] enjoys a reputation for high quality, strong brand recognition and brand loyalty. It has a powerful and sustainable position with independent suppliers, as well as good relations with many of the major merchants and builders. Polypipe has an effective management team, with many years of experience in plastic pipe systems and building products.’

John E Morningstar, a Castle Harlan vice president who was also closely involved in the deal, added, ‘Despite softer current trading markets in the UK and higher raw material and energy costs, Polypipe has been resilient and remains well positioned. Castle Harlan is confident that Polypipe will continue its excellent growth, as it benefits from the long-term trend of substituting plastic pipe systems for aging copper, clay and concrete pipes in a wide range of residential, commercial and civil-engineering applications, including storm-water management and large-diameter sewage systems.’

Castle Harlan focuses on controlling interests in the buy-out and development of middle-market companies in North America and Europe. Castle Harlan also invests in Australia, New Zealand and the Australasian region through its Sydney-based affiliate, CHAMP Private Equity.

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