14.08.2019

TVH acquires IPS

Belgian international spare parts and access rental group TVH has acquired the UK based IPS replacement parts business along with its Outrigger Pads division from IAPS, which also owns APS, the UK based access equipment distributor.

Telford based IPS had revenues last year of around £10 million and was the UK’s largest independent specialist aerial lift parts supplier. IAPS co-owner and director Kevin Shadbolt will remain with the IPS business which will, we understand retain its separate identity and operations. Speaking of the deal he said: “We welcome the acquisition, as it brings clear opportunities and benefits for both our customers and the IPS team. Our meetings with the TVH team are very constructive, and I am looking forward to an ambitious future together.”
Dominiek Valcke, chief executive of TVH Parts added: “We are very proud that the IPS team is joining TVH Parts, and we are convinced that through the acquisition we will significantly strengthen our technical expertise and commercial knowledge in aerial work platform replacement parts. As a group, we will be able to offer our customers better technical knowledge and support as well as a more extensive product portfolio.”

The deal leaves APS as a standalone access sales and support distributor, representing manufacturers such as Hinowa, Omme, Niftylift and Genie. Business partner Steve Couling will remain as managing director and co-owner of the APS business.

IPS and APS merged in late 2012 to eventually become IAPS although the two businesses continued to maintain an independent focus. IPS was based in Telford, while APS remained in Huntingdon.

The move comes a month or so after APS founder Jim Daintith finally retired from the business. See Jim Daintith to retire.

The acquisition of IPS parts businesses is not new for TVH, it acquired the IPS France business in 2014 and its Australian operation in 2015. The service arm of IPS - which had been rebranded as PSR when APS and IPS merged - was acquired by Genie in 2016.

Vertikal Comment

This looks like a rational move for IAPS and its owners, in that APS and IPS are similar but quite different businesses. The process of transferring the IAPS business from the original majority owners of APS and IPS - Jim Daintith and Tony Jennings - to the current management team has been drawing towards a conclusion, one assumes that this sale will help pay down any debt that the management might have taken on to acquire the business, and provide APS with a stronger balance sheet, and greater focus.

There will, of course be some concerns about how the IPS business might be merged in to the TVH business, but there are also plenty of potential upsides for those staying with the IPS operation. For TVH it cements the solid progress the UK team has made in penetrating the powered access market from a very low level a few years back, but more importantly takes the TVH access parts operation to a whole new level. It would do well to consolidate its access parts business with IPS in Telford, when it makes the move to its new facility in Kidderminster, Worcestershire early next year.

It does also throw up one slightly interesting detail, in that TVH owns one of Europe’s leading powered access rental companies – Mateco - while one of IPS’ largest accounts has traditionally been Nationwide Platforms – now owned by Mateco rival Loxam. Having said that Loxam and TVH have worked together in the past, with TVH buying the Gardemann business that Loxam acquired with its takeover of Lavendon etc… And the two companies appear to have a healthy competitive relationship.

All in all this looks like a sensible and logical deal for both parties.

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