They could see considerable potential for the business to grow further, but needed investment to take the next step. Charlie explains:
“The business was at a certain size and we had to look at how we were going to expand. We teamed up with Doug Baxter, the ex-CEO of one of our peers in the industry and developed a global plan of what we could achieve if we could get the right people to work with us.
“We met with private equity houses and we chose August Equity as the best partner. One, because we had a good feeling about them. Two, because we had advisors who said how good they were and the personalities of the people we met were very good. And when we explained to August Equity what we wanted to do, and the way we wanted to put it together, they were the most enthusiastic.
“Has it been worth it? August Equity has given us the opportunity to buy like-minded businesses and to be able to build a proper group with greater geographical reach. The business is more secure than when we were a smaller business, and we have even greater opportunities to grow and acquire, which is absolutely fantastic.”
Charlie and Richard are still shareholders of 3Si and sit on its board alongside the Chairman, CFO and two August Equity partners. “One of the things that works phenomenally well is that there’s mutual respect between all the parties. August Equity isn’t trying to stifle our thought processes. They’re supportive and they’re a good outfit to work with. All in all, they’re very fair people to do business with.”