InvoCare announces purchase of Bledisloe

19-11-2010

InvoCare Limited (“InvoCare”) announced today the execution of an agreement to purchase 100% of the shares in Bledisloe Group Holdings Pty Ltd ("Bledisloe"), which is majority owned by Australian mid market private equity firm Propel Investments.

The principal features of the transaction are:

  • Acquisition of Bledisloe’s Australian and New Zealand operations  
  • A$114 million Enterprise Value (“EV”) for Bledisloe
  • EPS accretive in year 1
  • Annual Australian and New Zealand Gross Sales Revenues of Bledisloe of approximately A$60 million
  • EV/EBITDA multiple is approximately 7.5 times allowing for expected synergies
  • Funded in part through the issue of 5,277,227, InvoCare shares to Bledisloe shareholders, at an issue price of A$6.86, with the balance payable in cash using debt drawn under InvoCare's new banking facilities
  • Bledisloe’s shareholders have agreed for their InvoCare shares to be restricted for twelve months under escrow
  • Expected to be completed in the first quarter of CY 2011
  • Subject to (amongst other things) relevant regulatory approvals

Andrew Smith, InvoCare’s Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director said:

“The opportunity to combine our two businesses so as to complement InvoCare’s existing businesses in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane/Gold Coast and to introduce InvoCare in New Zealand, Tasmania and regional parts of Queensland is clearly attractive and will generate significant value for our shareholders. InvoCare will increase its overall Australian market share by 4% to 26% and importantly 55% of Bledisloe's revenue is derived from markets in which InvoCare does not currently have a presence.

This transaction and, in particular our entrance into New Zealand, will position InvoCare as a significant provider of funeral services in the Asia-Pacific region, serving over 50,000 families per year and generating more than A$325 million in sales revenues.

Our enhanced operating footprint, combined with the talent of management and staff, will allow us to deliver outstanding customer service to our client families and to local communities. Any restructuring will be minimal and will allow both businesses to continue to operate as usual. InvoCare is well- positioned to achieve its long term growth objectives.”

Phil Wikman, Bledisloe's Managing Director said:

"Whilst this transaction is proceeding, it’s ‘business as usual’ for all our staff and operations. The contribution of our management and staff in building long term relationships with client families has made a notable contribution to industry standards of compassionate care. InvoCare is well respected in the industry and shares Bledisloe’s service values and support for the community."

BACKGROUND

InvoCare, headquartered in Sydney, is the largest provider of funeral services in Australia and in Singapore. It is also the largest operator of private cemeteries and crematoria in Australia. InvoCare operates 178 funeral homes and 12 cemeteries & crematoria.

Bledisloe has built a strong suite of brands across Australia and New Zealand to emerge as New Zealand’s largest provider of funeral services and are one of the top three operators in several key Australian markets. It has 52 funeral homes and 3 cemeteries & crematoria.

For immediate Release

For details, contact Andrew Smith, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director on +61 2 9978 5207 or dcadogan@invocare.com.au