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Palatine Exits Veincentre Following Highly Successful Rollout Strategy

Palatine has made a second successful exit from its pioneering Impact Fund with the sale of its stake in Veincentre, the UK’s largest chain of varicose vein treatment clinics.

The sale, to CBPE Capital (CBPE), follows a rapid roll-out of treatment clinics from seven at the time of the original investment in July 2019 to 22 with the business now operating across a national footprint.

The Staffordshire-based business was founded in 2003 by internationally renowned clinician Dr David West and his wife Deborah, who spotted a gap in the market for a business offering a non-invasive, non-surgical treatment for varicose veins called Endovenous Laser Ablation (EVLA) which is now recognised by NICE as the treatment of choice for this very common condition as it is safer, more effective and more durable than traditional surgery and most patients can immediately return to work and other normal activities.

Alongside the significant expansion of treatment clinics, Palatine has supported the business by developing its digital marketing capability to drive lead generation which has increased enquiries by 270% and revenue by 180% over the course of the investment. The business, which sits in Palatine’s Impact Fund, has focused on increasing the accessibility and affordability of the treatment which has driven an increase in the number of individuals who have benefitted.

The business has improved access to varicose vein treatment and alleviated the burden on the NHS, as if left untreated, varicose veins can develop into leg ulcers which require extensive in-home care.

Palatine Partner and Head of the Impact Fund, Beth Houghton and Investment Director, James Painter transacted the original investment in 2019 and have worked with the management team over the last three years to scale the business.

James Painter, Investment Director at Palatine, said: “The successful rollout strategy implemented by Veincentre has improved access to a safe and affordable treatment for varicose veins for thousands more patients, which was a key objective when we invested.

“Having supported significant growth in the leadership team and established and expanded the digital marketing function, Veincentre is very well-placed to continue its growth journey and we wish Maurice and the team every success over the coming years.”

Dr David West said “Deborah, my daughter Katherine and I are very proud of the business we established and grew, and we have been superbly assisted over the last three years by Beth and James at Palatine who could not have been more supportive.

“Veincentre was based on 6 key values for the benefit of both patients and staff. Honesty, Safety, Effectiveness, Efficiency, Respect and Value for money. Whilst there is a touch of sadness that we are, after many years, exiting the business, we are happy to be passing our company into the ownership of Anand and his team at CBPE and the management of Maurice and our excellent senior managers, who we know will uphold these values, which proved so crucial to the success and reputation of the business. We send our very best wishes to all who work in, have financial interests in and crucially are to use the services of Veincentre in future.”

Maurice McLoughlin, CEO of Veincentre, said, “I am very proud of what the team has achieved over the last four years, helping more people get successful treatment for their varicose veins. Our strategy has been to grow our clinic base to make our services more accessible, whilst maintaining our high levels of clinical excellence and raising our profile through enhanced marketing campaigns. I am very grateful for the support offered by Palatine and the West family and look forward to our new partnership with CBPE and to continued success.”

Anand Jain, Partner from CBPE said, “We are delighted to be able to support Maurice and the team in continuing to expand and develop the business so as to be able to provide these much needed services to a wider patient base. We will continue to invest in the people, processes and systems to support the growth of the Group and the delivery of outstanding patient care.”

Veincentre is the second successful exit from Palatine’s maiden Impact Fund, a £100m returns-focused fund which has backed more than a dozen mid-market businesses tackling some of society’s biggest challenges, including accessibility to education and sustainability.

The shareholders were advised on the transaction by a corporate finance team from Grant Thornton (Pete Terry, Pete Jennings, Duncan Morpeth, Rachael Taplin and Alex Parry). Addleshaw Goddard provided legal advice. CBPE were advised by Eversheds Sutherland on the legal side. Rickitt Mitchell provided advice to Management.

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