Leeds-based healthcare company, Steeper Group is pushing for international growth whilst maintaining consistently high quality products and services following a management buyout.
The deal sees two members of the existing executive board of directors, Paul Steeper, CEO and John Midgley, Finance Director, acquire the business from UK mid-market private equity firm, Dunedin. For many years, Steeper has been owned by private equity firms, and by Dunedin since 2005. This particular investment and support has been vital in enabling the company to grow to its current position in the market.
As part of the agreement, the company’s bebionic area of the business will transfer ownership to German prosthetics company, Ottobock.
Almost 100 years ago, Steeper Group was founded in the 1920s by Paul Steeper’s late grandfather, Hugh. The company initially set out to provide prosthetic limbs to veterans of the Great War, and since then has expanded across prosthetics, orthotics and assistive technology – with a focus on creating significant turning points in individuals’ lives through exceptional clinical services and award-winning products.
Paul Steeper and John Midgley’s combined 40 years’ experience at the company will ensure a smooth continuation of the business. John Midgley said, “For many years, Steeper has been owned by private equity firms, which has enabled the company to grow to its current position in the market. We are delighted to be moving forward on a new journey from this strong base. Both Paul and I have been long-standing members of the executive board of directors, and are confident and excited about what the future holds.”
Paul Steeper added, “We have enjoyed our time with Dunedin and greatly appreciate the support we have received. We are now looking forward to the future as we seek to further strengthen our existing positive relationships with customers, our distributors and our suppliers, and continuing to provide the best products and services to the industry”.
Nicholas Hoare from Dunedin said of the investment, “We invested in Steeper in 2005 to support its growth plans helping it to break into new markets including the US and launching new products such as the bebionic hand. The sale to Ottobock is an excellent fit and we are confident that the business will continue to deliver on its growth ambitions.”
KPMG (Christian Mayo and Ben Taylor) advised the shareholders of Steeper on the deal. Christian Mayo, partner and head of corporate finance at KPMG in Yorkshire, said: “When it comes to the wider industry, medtech is an exciting, high-growth sector that is continually evolving – particularly in our region. As a result, we’re seeing a great deal of interest from both the investment community and trade buyers for this type of business and it’s an area we expect to see more activity in throughout the year ahead.”
The company are currently in the process of relocating their existing Leeds site to a new, ‘centre of excellence’ in the area.
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