Doughty Hanson’s exit will be the fourth instalment in the buyout life of Vue Cinemas

This morning has seen the announcement by private equity firm Doughty Hanson that it is on the verge of selling Vue Cinemas to OMERS Private Equity and Alberta Investment Management Corporation, two Canada-based investment firms, for a reported £935m. This will be the fourth instalment in the buyout life of Vue and will provide a significant return on investment for Doughty Hanson, which paid £450m for Vue back in December 2010, when it purchased the company from Och Ziff Capital Management Group. During the ownership of Doughty Hanson, Vue has grown from being a predominantly UK-based chain to a chain that via organic and acquisitive growth now has locations across Portugal, Taiwan, Germany and Denmark.

Instalment 1 took place back in May 2003, when Legal & General Ventures (now known as LGV) joined with Clarity Partners and Boston Ventures, which had founded SBC International Cinema, to help fund the acquisition of 36 Warner Village cinemas via the founding of a new company – Vue.

Instalment 2 saw an exit for LGV, Clarity Partners & Boston Ventures via a management buyout backed by Bank of Scotland Integated Finance in June 2006, where the company changed hands for a reported £350m.
Instalment 2 Part b – with the demise of Bank of Scotland Integrated Finance in 2008, the subsequent purchase of BofS by Lloyds TSB and the subsequent sale of the BofS portfolio assets by Lloyds to Coller Capital, saw Vue ending up owned by Coller Capital and Och Ziff.

Instalment 3 – the aforementioned acquisition of Vue by Doughty Hanson in 2010 from Coller Capital and Och Ziff.

I guess this just proves that if a company continues to grow and show good returns for its investors then there is no reason why it shouldn’t continue to be the subject of interest for financial investors.

Filed under: private, UK, equity