Hg has made a 4.9x return on its exit of UK-based JLA, a supplier of commercial laundry, catering, heating and fire safety equipment, to Cinven.

The deal has generated a gross IRR of 26 per cent for its Hg6 fund.

Hg acquired JLA in 2010, later selling a minority stake in the business in 2015 which gave the firm a 62 per cent hold.

With Hg’s investment, JLA has broadened its offering from a commercial laundry equipment supplier. It has made 16 bolt-on acquisitions and increased employee headcount in the UK from 310 to 900, including 300 engineers.

Cinven said it was attracted to JLA’s strong position in an attractive market, having delivered double-digit annual revenue and Ebitda since 2013.

Hg partner Thorsten Toepfer and principal Joris Van Gool said: “Hg has supported management to enable this growth during our eight-year investment period, including a variety of operational projects covering new product development, digital marketing and acquisitions.

“Hg’s investment returns have been driven by the combination of impressive revenue and Ebitda growth, as well as accretive M&A delivered by a world-class management team,” they added.

Cinven partner Rory Neeson said: “We believe JLA has an excellent platform to support its further growth ambitions, including its national engineering platform and sales and marketing capabilities.

“Cinven’s strategy is to invest in JLA to support the Group’s organic growth – both in its existing core products of laundry and catering solutions and in new areas, including heating and fire safety. We also see a great opportunity for continued growth through buy and build.”

Hg was advised by Baird, Deloitte, Skadden and EY-Parthenon.

JLA is Hg’s seventeenth exit from its Hg6 fund, which closed in 2010 at £1.9bn (€2.2bn). The business is the ninth investment made by Cinven’s Fund 6, which closed on its €7bn hard cap in 2016, and its second in the UK.