The top dealmakers have been honoured at Insider’s annual Sheffield City Region Dealmakers Awards, held on 15 June 2017. YFM Equity Partners won ‘Deal of the Year’, for the sale of GO Outdoors to JD Sports Fashion plc for £130m. The judges said the sale was very substantial deal and achieved a considerable multiple.
The sale, together with the partial realisation in 2011, means that YFM has achieved 37x the original investment, with a £23m total return.
When YFM originally invested in 1998, through British Smaller Companies VCT plc, one of its advised VCTs, alongside the founders Paul Caplan and John Graham, there was just one store in Sheffield generating £2m in sales, but the firm could see potential for rapid expansion.
YFM helped GO Outdoors to professionalise the board and to manage its transformational growth supporting the introduction of the membership store discount card and new expertise in e-commerce. YFM’s long-term partnership with the business helped create a market leading retail business with 58 stores, over 2000 employees and over £200m of turnover.