BGF invests £4.25m in Derbyshire house builder

Woodall Group, the owner of Midlands’ house builder Woodall Homes, has received a £4.25 million investment from BGF, the UK’s most active growth capital investor. Funding will be used to support the accelerated acquisition of land in prime locations, to underpin long term growth, and to increase development activity and building output over the coming years.

The investment will allow Woodall Homes to deliver more high-quality homes in the local area and beyond, and to create more job opportunities.

Dave Wood, founder and managing director, remains the majority shareholder in the Derbyshire-headquartered business and will lead its next stage of growth. Founded in 2011, Woodall Homes has built houses in landmark developments across the East Midland. Most recently working on developments in Chesterfield town centre, Newbold, Duckmanton, Pleasley, Clowne and Bolsover, close to the historic Bolsover Castle.

Woodall Homes has a strong emphasis on premium finishes, build quality and housing design that complements local surroundings, with sustainability embedded in the construction process.

Following an introduction by BGF, Woodall Group has appointed Derek Mapp, founder of Tom Cobleigh and chair of Mitie plc, as non-executive chair.

Aaron Baker and Olly Cutting led BGF’s investment, and Baker will join the board.

Dave Wood said: “After a decade of building an established and reputable business, we are now looking ahead to the next stage of our growth. BGF’s investment will allow us to accelerate our land bank and development activity to meet the immediate and longer-term demand for quality housing on attractive developments.

“We explored several different options for the business, and it was important to find a funding partner aligned with our goals. BGF understood our ambitions from day one. We have got to know the team well over the past few months and are looking forward to moving forward with their backing.”

Aaron Baker said: “Woodall Homes is a great business with an outstanding reputation for quality and has the confidence and capability to grow quickly. Having backed several regional housebuilders, we understand the dynamics of the market and the potential for longer-term growth. We are very excited to be backing Dave and the team, and to have attracted a Chair of the quality of Derek Mapp.”

The December investment into Woodall Group topped off a busy 2020 for BGF’s Nottingham team, having backed Hinckley-based UK Flooring Direct in November, and investing in AIM Listed Anpario in July.
Baker added “BGF is well suited for businesses across all sectors and stages of development, and our investment activity in 2020 proves this. Over the last nine years, we have now backed nearly 400 companies with £2.5 billion of capital.

“After the turmoil of 2020, the availability of equity capital to support growth and strategic aspirations will be even more important in 2021, and BGF has a prominent role to play in enabling and accelerating growth potential in the UK SME landscape.”

BGF has strong experience in backing regional developers across the UK & Ireland, with investments in Braidwater, Campion Homes, Winterbrook, Apex Housing Group and Cussins. The latter going on to be acquired by Northumberland Estates.

The advisers to the transaction were:

• BGF: Knights plc (Legal), Navigo Consulting (Financial) and BDO (Tax).
• Woodall Homes: Gosschalks (Legal), UHY Hacker Young (Tax), Benchmark (CF).

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