3i agrees to divest NSL for £120m

21 Sep 2010

3i, an international investor focused on private equity and infrastructure, and funds managed by 3i today announce they have agreed to sell NSL, one of the UK’s leading outsourced services providers, to AAC Capital Partners for an enterprise value of £120 million.

NSL is a market leader in the provision of traffic enforcement and transport management services to local authorities and government agencies in the UK. It operates as an outsourced partner for all types of transport and related services including enforcement solutions, business process outsourcing, passenger transport and consultancy.

3i and funds managed by 3i originally invested in NSL as part of the buyout of NCP Group in August 2005.  In March 2007, NCP was separated into two businesses: NCP Off Street, a traditional car parking business, which was sold to Macquarie; and NSL, which was retained in 3i’s portfolio.

During 3i’s investment period, NSL has successfully grown its market leading share of the UK parking enforcement market with a number of significant contract wins and retentions, including Westminster, Camden, Waltham Forrest and Cambridgeshire. NSL has grown from operating parking enforcement contracts for 25 local authorities in 2005 to today working for 50 local authorities and having two national Government contracts; one for the DVLA and one for Northern Ireland Roads Services, and has grown the number of employees from 2,700 to around 5,000 today.  

Under 3i’s stewardship, the business has made significant progress with respect to its BPO offering winning the London Congestion Charging contract (with IBM) as well as the nationwide DVLA contract immobilising untaxed vehicles. NSL has also expanded into the Middle East, winning the world’s largest parking contract in Abu Dhabi, using the expertise the company has built up as the UK’s leading parking manager to bring controlled parking to Abu Dhabi for the first time.

Alan Giddins, 3i Managing Partner UK Private Equity, commented: “Over the last three years, 3i has worked closely with NSL’s management team to help build the company’s market leading position. Through lending our expertise and international contacts, we have helped the business expand into new markets, develop and enhance its BPO offering, increase its operational efficiencies and further strengthen its market leading position.” 

Mark Underwood, NSL Chief Executive, commented: “With 3i’s support and access to its network of business professionals, NSL has achieved significant milestones over the last three years. We look forward to entering a new stage in our development and continuing to build the business with AAC Capital Partners.” 

About NSL 
NSL was formed in spring 2007 following the demerger of National Car Parks into two separate businesses.

NSL is the market leader in on street parking management, and the UK’s largest employer of parking enforcement officers. It works for local authorities all over the UK, including London - where it works with 14 Boroughs - Manchester, Birmingham and Edinburgh.

Its Passenger transport Division provides airside and landside coaching for Heathrow and Gatwick airports, and patient transfer and high dependency services to the NHS.  Its award winning consultancy, the Project Centre, provides street design and traffic management consultancy services to the public and private sector across the UK, and its Business Process division provides back office services for a number of local authorities, and also Transport for London, at centres in Croydon and Coventry.

NSL also delivers parking services in Abu Dhabi in an operation described as the “biggest parking contract in the world”, in a joint venture.

About 3i
3i is an international investor focused on Private Equity and Infrastructure, investing in Europe, Asia and North America. Our competitive advantage comes from our international network and the strength and breadth of our business relationships.  These underpin the value that we deliver to our portfolio, shareholders and fund investors. http://www.3i.com/

For further information please contact:

Kathryn van der Kroft
email. kathryn.vanderkroft@3i.com
tel.  +44 207 975 3021