Lonsdale acquires major stake in Ireland’s Elite Electronic Services


Lonsdale Capital Partners has made a “significant investment” in Ireland-based Elite Electronic Services (Elite).

The investment will be the sixth made from Lonsdale’s first institutional fund, which closed in April 2016 at £110m (€124.4m).

Set up in 1986, Elite provides electronic manufacturing services (EMS) to a range of industries including medical devices, secure communications, power generation and wearable tech.

The company makes highly-specialised products including defibrillators, telecom systems and athlete tracking devices, for clients including Barcelona FC and some NFL teams.

With Lonsdale’s investment, Elite plans to build on its core business in Ireland while expanding into the UK and internationally through organic growth and strategic bolt-ons.

Headquartered in Enniskillen in Northern Ireland, the business employs 215 people, generating yearly revenues of over £22m.

Lonsdale’s first institutional fund made ten bolt-ons in 2017, while also partially exiting superyacht servicing business GYG via a London Stock Exchange listing.

The lower mid-market buying house invested on a deal-by-deal basis between 2008 and 2015.

Commenting on the deal, Lonsdale’s director, Andrew Chetwood, said: “Elite exemplifies the three key qualities that Lonsdale looks for in its investments: a company operating in a fast-growing niche; a strong market position; and a great management team.”

Elite is led by managing director Jonathan Balfour and business director Neville Hale. The pair acquired the business from Balfour’s father and uncle in 2015.

“This investment from Lonsdale gives us the additional firepower to take the business to the next level, as well as expand our capabilities in new industries and grow our customer base in both the UK and overseas,” confirmed Balfour.

Advisors to the deal included KPMG Ireland, CMS Cameron McKenna Olswang Nabarro, CIL and BDO on the buyside, and La Salle Corporate, PKF-FPM and Tughans on the sellside.

Banking advisors to the transaction included First Trust Bank, Deloitte Ireland, CMS Cameron McKenna Olswang Nabarro and DWF.