SLR announces acquisition of GSS Environmental, a leading Australian Environmental Consultancy

08 Oct 2012

3i backed SLR Management Ltd, the international environmental consultancy, today announces the Group’s acquisition of GSS Environmental (GSSE), a leading Australian provider of environmental consulting and project management services to clients in the mining, minerals, land development and natural resource sectors.

GSS Environmental is a top three environmental consultant to the coal extraction industry in Australia, having advised on approximately 60% of Australia’s coal mines, which counts BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto and Xstrata amongst its clients.  With turnover for the period ended 30th June 2012 of £5m, it has 50 employees operating from offices in Newcastle, in New South Wales, and Mackay, in central Queensland. 

The acquisition represents a further milestone in the Group’s stated strategy of augmenting organic growth by the selective acquisition of high calibre companies to strengthen and extend its technical and geographic coverage.

GSS Environmental brings significant expertise in the coal mining industry to the Group including advising on environmental impact and risk assessments, geological mapping, mine design and development approvals, mine closure and rehabilitation and ongoing monitoring. Once merged with SLR’s existing Australian operations, the combined business will have 225 employees providing specialist environmental services to the energy, mining, industrial, waste management, infrastructure and planning and development sectors.

David Richards, Chief Executive of SLR, commenting on the acquisition, said:

“Having recently raised additional finance enabling the Group to deliver acquisitions with a total enterprise value of £50m, I am delighted to announce the acquisition of GSS Environmental. In line with our strategy to target high-quality consulting firms in growth regions and market sectors, this acquisition will further extend our geographic footprint and strengthen the Group’s expertise in mining planning and approvals, environmental management and upstream oil and gas sectors in Australia and Asia Pacific.

“Following the recent acquisition of Metago, a leading environmental consultancy in South Africa and Western Australia, and with further potential acquisitions in the pipeline, the Group’s strong presence across Australia, Canada, Southern Africa, the United States, and the United Kingdom and its expanding technical expertise provide a strong platform for accelerated growth in 2013.” 
 
3i’s David Whileman added the following:

"SLR continues to outperform the market and our view that we are backing the best team in the sector has only increased with time. GSS Environmental’s world-class technical skills and high calibre team are a great fit with SLR, both in Australia and globally, and we're delighted to further support SLR in this acquisition. We have been happy to help SLR identify this excellent opportunity and will continue to work closely with the combined team, using our international network and M&A experience to help SLR achieve its ambitious expansion plans."

For further information, please contact:
 
SLR Management Limited  
David Richards, Chief Executive 
01844 337380
 
MHP Group Katie Hunt
Katie Hunt / Giles Robinson  
020 3128 8100

About SLR Management

SLR is an international environmental consultancy, headquartered near Oxford in the UK, with a network of offices in Australia, Canada, Ireland, Namibia, Singapore, South Africa, the UK and USA.  It’s 900 specialist employees provide advice and support on a wide range of strategic and site-specific issues to a diverse and growing base of corporate, regulatory and governmental clients. The Group has a blue-chip client base across its key sectors which include energy and mining where it’s clients include all the major international operators. SLR is also the leading consultant to the private sector waste management industry in the UK and undertakes a significant amount of planning and environmental impact assessment work for major commercial developers.

SLR’s core markets of energy, natural resource and waste management have been relatively stable during the global financial crisis, and the Group, backed by 3i, Lloyds Banking Group and HSBC, has successfully delivered on its strategy of acquiring resilient, high quality businesses which are poised to grow through the opportunities emerging following the global financial crisis.

In the Group’s latest results, for the year ended 31 October 2011, it reported a 24% increase in revenues to £83.3m and a record EBITA before exceptional items of £9.1 million.  SLR is an employee controlled consultancy, with over 400 employee share and option holders, and also has the backing of 3i as a minority shareholder.