Acquisition Will Expand Small- and Middle-Market Asset Finance Capabilities in U.K. and Europe
White Oak Global Advisors, LLC on behalf of its institutional clients (collectively “White Oak” or the “Company”), announced today that White Oak has agreed to expand its asset-based lending platform to serve clients in the UK and Europe through the acquisition of LDF Group (“LDF”), a UK-based finance company providing asset finance, business loans, commercial mortgages and education leases to small and middle-market companies.
Established in 1986, LDF is an industry leader and one of the largest independent finance providers for small and medium-sized businesses in the UK. LDF is headquartered in Ewloe, Wales, with four additional offices across England and Scotland: Manchester, London, Southampton and Stewarton.
In acquiring LDF, White Oak will have over 22,000 active loans across more than 10,000 direct clients in the UK SME market; a national sales force in excess of 100 personnel across a variety of channels; a position in the market where it is recognized as one of the major non-bank providers of SME capital and a fully functional platform in the SME lending space.
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Together, LDF and White Oak will provide small businesses and underserved middle-market companies across the UK with financing solutions to support their growth and working capital needs.
Andre Hakkak, White Oak CEO, said: “Europe represents a large opportunity for White Oak, and we are excited to grow our presence and activity in the region by welcoming LDF into the White Oak family.
“LDF has been on an incredible growth trajectory, completing over £500 million of financing to small businesses across the UK in 2017 alone, and we are confident that the business will continue to grow with the backing of White Oak.”
White Oak is pleased to welcome the senior leadership of LDF led by Managing Director, Peter Alderson, and all 220 members of the LDF team and believes their expertise will allow White Oak to achieve further success and scale in the UK both through delivering new working capital products and developing their business in the European market.
Peter Alderson, LDF Managing Director, said: “LDF will continue to provide the same level of support and service to its clients under the same model, now backed by more resources to deliver more financing, products and opportunities to entrepreneurs and small businesses throughout the UK.
“It also gives us the opportunity to look to the wider European market to develop our reach and presence. We are delighted to have found in White Oak a partner that shares our values and our keen focus on client success.”
Tom Otte, White Oak Head of Europe, said: “This is the first step to expand the White Oak platform in the UK. I am excited to welcome such accomplished professionals in LDF to White Oak and expand our business across Europe.
“As economies continue to grow, there is an increasing need for the types of financing we provide to help smaller companies achieve their next evolution of growth.
Richard McDougall, Partner at Cabot Square Capital LLP, said: “Peter and the LDF team have done a tremendous job building the business to the size, scale and capability that it is today, and it has been a pleasure working with them over the last 5 years. We look forward to seeing the business continue to go from strength to strength under White Oak’s leadership.”
The transaction is subject to regulatory approval from the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority and is expected to complete within the next few months.