News - Larking Gowen Assists Salix River & Wetland Services Limited in sale to RSK

News - Larking Gowen Assists Salix River & Wetland Services Limited in sale to RSK

Tuesday, 11 February 2020

We are pleased to announce that Larking Gowen has acted for the shareholders of Salix River & Wetland Services Limited (“Salix”) on the sale of the company to RSK Environmental Ltd (“RSK”).  

Larking Gowen was engaged to confidentially market the business for sale and identify and approach potential buyers. The firm prepared sales documentation and negotiated with multiple interested parties, as well as handling due diligence enquiries, providing tax advice and assisting the legal team in drafting paperwork. Jack Minns and Matthew Laxton in Larking Gowen’s Corporate Finance team led the transaction.

Salix provides sustainable solutions to the challenges found in soil erosion control and river restoration projects. It also specialises in spillway and shoreline protection, inland dredging and wetland habitat creation schemes. In 2019, Salix acted as principal contractor on the ground-breaking River Nairn restoration project, which was a finalist for the UK River Prize. Amongst other things, the project has already profoundly improved the river for wildlife. Other recent projects have included the Yearl Weir riverbank stabilisation for United Utilities, a large-scale habitat creation project at Hoveton Broad, in the Norfolk Broads, for Natural England, and numerous river restoration projects for Affinity Water.

Salix will continue to be led by Managing Director, David Holland, who said: “When I founded Salix 16 years ago, my core philosophy and ethos was to create an environmental business with strong sustainable principles that would lead the market in innovation for managing our rivers and wetlands. Our method is to combine the ‘soft’ and ‘hard’ solutions in a balanced way, and we see joining RSK as an opportunity to not only expand this approach but also to continue growing our business without having to sacrifice our culture and values.”

RSK currently employs more than 3,600 staff in offices across the UK and worldwide. They provide independent environmental consultancy and technical services in the areas of the environment, health and safety, engineering and sustainability management to industrial, financial and public-sector clients in the UK and abroad. In 2016, RSK was awarded the prestigious Queen’s Award for Enterprise in international trade, one of the UK’s highest accolades for business success.

RSK Chief Executive Officer and founder, Alan Ryder, said: “I am delighted to welcome Salix’s skilled and experienced workforce to RSK. Their services are an excellent complement to the group and will allow both businesses to expand their service offering. Bringing together our long histories of successful and sustainability focussed projects and experience delivering innovative solutions in a range of sectors will enable us to deliver added value to our combined client base.” 

Commenting on the sale, Matthew Laxton, Assistant Manager in the Corporate Finance team at Larking Gowen, said: “We are delighted to have acted for David, Edward, Peter and the other shareholders of Salix. It was a pleasure to lead the transaction and help the shareholders secure a fantastic deal that achieved all shareholder objectives.”

Jack Minns, Manager in the Corporate Finance team at Larking Gowen, added: “We are confident that with RSK’s backing, Salix will be in pole position to take full advantage of the significant growth opportunities presented by the increased demand for their innovative and environmentally sustainable products, services and solutions.”

David Holland, Managing Director, said of Larking Gowen: “We found Matt, Jack and the rest of the Larking Gowen team to be great partners throughout the whole sale process. They looked after our best interests at all times and were punctual and professional throughout, going above and beyond to find the right buyer for our business and to get the deal done.”


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