Two bosses of kitchen and bathroom distributor PJH have cashed in their chips, scooping a fortune of over £7m each, after selling the business in a £33m deal.

Former chief executive David Riley and finance director Gerry Godlington both owned 25 per cent of the Bolton-based firm, which has been sold to private equity firm Lloyds TSB Development Capital.

Formed in 1972, the company designs, sources and distributes a range of kitchen units, appliances and bathroom suites to companies such as Barratt Homes, Persimmon and builders’ merchant Travis Perkins. PJH, which employs 700, is also an exclusive supplier of bathrooms to B&Q. The business has five trading divisions – Hopkinsons Fourways, The Kitchen Group, Onsite, In-Store Logistics and Wellness Whirlpool – and over 550,000 sq ft of warehouse space across its eight UK trading centres, which include Bolton and Walkden.

The Manchester office of LDC has invested £10m for a majority shareholding, and has installed a new management team. HSBC provided a debt package of £27.5m.

Buoyed by the home improvement boom PJH has seen its turnover rise from £100m in 2000 to more than £150m last year. In the next three years the new team hopes to grow annual sales to around £200m.

Andrew Yates, chief executive of PJH, said: “PJH’s established reputation in the market has helped us form strong partnerships with leading names like B&Q and exclusive supply agreements with a number of respected international brands. Consumer spending in the DIY market, and in particular bathroom suites and kitchen units, is set to continue increasing in the long term and PJH is perfectly positioned to capitalise on this growth.

“The backing of LDC is welcomed as we continue to build upon the business’ solid foundations.”

The new executive management team includes Mr Yates, Kevin Powell, logistics director, Mark Errington, group finance director, Phil Anderson, commercial director and Steve Johnstone, sales director. Ray Stenton from LDC will join the board. Dow Schofield Watts advised the new executive management team.

Jim Hodkinson, former chairman of B&Q, will join PJH as chairman.

Paul Johnson, director in charge of LDC’s Manchester office, said: This is our third deal in four weeks, following the £12m buyout of Music Zone and the £26m disposal of Xpert, in what has been quite a quiet time in market terms. 2005 looks like being a very exciting year for LDC.”

Kitchens maker in £33m MBO

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