Clearwater International advises on €26m sale of Synarbor to Sovereign Capital

Synarbor plc (Synarbor), a market leading education recruitment business, has been sold to Sovereign Capital Partners LLP. Clearwater International advised the company on the sale.

Synarbor, head-quartered in Sheffield, has over 20 years’ experience in placing staff in the state, independent and international education sectors. The business predominantly supplies temporary teachers, teaching assistants and support staff to its clients, which comprise primary and secondary schools (including academies), and also special educational needs schools and nurseries. The business is differentiated in the market by its unique managed service, schools collaborative approach, including added value offerings ranging from consultancy through to fully managed turnaround services. The business engages with approximately 2,000 clients.

Sovereign Capital’s directors consider that Synarbor has a number of attractive characteristics including its strength of operational brands, branch network and geographical spread. With expectations to invest in Synarbor through additional consultants and resources in order to deliver continued growth, the business can look forward to an exciting period of its history going forward under Sovereign’s ownership.

Clearwater International partner Marcus Archer and associate director Andy Dyer advised Synarbor on the sale. This is the sixth deal that Clearwater’s Business Services team has completed in the education sector, having also advised on the sales of Teaching Personnel (to RJD Partners and then Graphite Capital), ITN Mark, Vision for Education and Sugarman Group.

Dennis Hall, Independent Non-Executive Director of Synarbor plc, said:

“Clearwater International did a great job in supporting us through the sale process. They brought their real depth of education recruitment sector knowledge to bear on the transaction, leaving no stone unturned in finding the right buyer to take the business forward on the next stage of its development. Further, the team’s dedication to getting the deal done was unstinting and their negotiation skills came to the fore in delivering a fair deal for the shareholders. I would have no hesitation in recommending Marcus and the team to any businesses looking to transact in this sector.”

Marcus Archer, Head of Business Services, Clearwater International commented:

 “The sale to Sovereign Capital Partners provides an exit at a fair valuation for a long tail of shareholders, many of whom have held the stock since it de-listed from AIM in 2008. The current board and management team, supported by significant shareholders, Baird Capital Partners and Risk Capital Partners, have done a fantastic job in turning around the business and turning Synarbor into one of the pre-eminent players in the UK education recruitment market. In Sovereign they have found an investor with the appetite to invest in and grow the business on the next phase of its journey. It has been a pleasure working with the Board to realise an exit for the shareholders and we wish the business, its shareholders and employees well on the start of their new journey.”