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NG Bailey makes bid for power with purchase of £89m turnover Freedom Group

Purchase of facilities and utilities specialist opens wider engineering markets to NG Bailey

NG Bailey has completed the acquisition, for an undisclosed sum, of Wakefield-based Freedom Group, a leading provider of facilities and power engineering services.

The purchase of Freedom will bring the expanded business up to a turnover of £600m a year and will allow NG Bailey to extend its range of services and develop a presence in new sectors, specifically the electricity distribution network (DNO) market. 

The Freedom Group of companies posted pretax profit of £1.8 million on turnover of £88.9 million in the year to 30 April 2017, 

NG Bailey said the sector is set for significant expansion over the coming years, with new technologies supporting the rapid growth of low-carbon power generation in the UK and the development of increased battery storage capacity.

For more than 20 years Freedom has provided engineering capital replacement projects and ‘hard FM’ maintenance services, particularly within utilities, through its four divisions: Infrastructure Services, Networks, Power and Professional Services.

Freedom works primarily with DNOs and private network owners across substations, overhead lines, underground cables, buildings and associated infrastructure. Its key customers include Northern Powergrid, UK Power Networks, Scottish Power, Electricity North West, Yorkshire Water and the Port of Felixstowe.

NG Bailey said the acquisition will also increase capabilities in sectors such as defence and airports, as well as expanding its engineering and maintenance services across major infrastructure portfolios, such as data centre telecoms and ports.

Freedom’s existing management team will continue to run the £120m turnover business under its existing brand within the NG Bailey Group

David Hurcomb, NG Bailey’s Chief Executive, said: “It makes strategic and commercial sense to have Freedom as part of our group as it’s a well-respected company in a sector with strong future growth opportunities…Combining our offerings strengthens both our market positions, but it also creates significant new opportunities for both businesses. It will enable NG Bailey to compete more effectively in new markets, specifically the electricity distribution sector. It is an area where our combined skills and market-leading approach to principal contractor management, design and BIM will add considerable value. Having Freedom’s skills and expertise will increase our capabilities within electrical infrastructure.”

The addition of Freedom’s 600-strong team will take NG Bailey’s headcount to 3,600 employees.

David Hartley, Chief Operating Officer of Freedom Group, added: “Our existing knowledge of, and relationships with, the distribution network operators, combined with NG Bailey’s innovative approach to large engineering and services projects, provides a strong platform for sustained growth for both companies. The enlarged group will offer a highly-attractive, end-to-end proposition across electrical, mechanical and fabric maintenance services to a number of markets, focusing on outstanding technical expertise and project delivery.”

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