Goals Soccer board accepts and recommends offer from TPC

Canadian pension fund Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan Board said on Friday the directors of British outdoor soccer centres operator Goals Soccer Centres plc (LON:GOAL) had agreed to its GBP73.1m (USD115m/EUR94m) takeover offer and recommended shareholders to accept it.

The agreement follows an approach by Teachers’ made in April 2012.

The Canadian fund is making the GBP1.44 (USD/EUR) a share bid through its private equity arm Teachers’ Private Capital (TPC), whose vice president and head of the fund’s office in London, Jo Taylor, said it would support Goals to achieve its full potential and strengthen its position as the country’s premier five-a-side operator. Goals’ managers made the company into a solid business since they took it over in 2000, Taylor said.

The price is a premium of 34% to Goals’ closing on 30 March 2012, the buyer said.

The target company, in turn, sees the deal with Teachers’ as an important step in the management’s efforts to expand its scale, geography and capability, according to managing director Keith Rogers.

Completion is subject to clearance by Goal’s shareholders controlling at least 75% of its shares, among other conditions.
The British company owns and runs 43 outdoor five-a-side football centres in the UK and one in the US, with its locations receiving over 100,000 customers weekly.

Goals employs around 800 staff and generated revenues of GBP30.4m last year. It also announced earlier in July an approach from private equity fund Patron Capital Partners.

TPC manages a global portfolio worth some USD12bn.

Canada’s TPC acquires a 75% stake in Norwegian outdoor clothing firm Helly Hansen

Canadian Teachers’ Private Capital (TPC), the private equity investment arm of Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, has entered into an agreement to buy a 75% stake in Norwegian outdoor apparel designer Helly Hansen Group AS.

TPC will take the controlling stake from Altor Fund II for an undisclosed amount, the buyer announced on Friday. It noted that the fund will retain the remaining 25% in the apparel group.

Commenting on the transaction, TPC vice president and head of Teaches’ London office Jo Taylor said that the company recognises excellent opportunities to continue increasing revenues and international awareness outside its core European markets.

Oslo-based Helly Hansen specialises in designing, developing and marketing technical apparel for skiing, sailing, training and other outdoor activities. The firm has about 500 workers and generated a revenue of NOK1.58bn (USD259.2m/EUR212.4m) in 2011.

Its CEO Peter Sjolander said the company will seek an international expansion of the brand, more specifically in North America. The executive believes that the solid financial support and established global presence of its new owner will prove to be invaluable in helping Helly Hansen reach this goal.

Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan is a Canadian single-profession pension plan with CAD117.1bn (USD115.2m/EUR94.4m) in assets as of the end of 2011. Its investment arm manages a global portfolio worth some CAD12bn.