Elland energy firm bought out for £7m

Gareth Henderson, Orchard managing director, and Stuart Black, Lakehouse executive chairman
Gareth Henderson, Orchard managing director, and Stuart Black, Lakehouse executive chairman

Elland-based Orchard have been acquired by nationwide energy firm Lakehouse in a deal worth an initial £7m.

Orchard, who employ 78 staff, was founded in 2004 and, prior to its acquisition by Lakehouse, was principally owned by Gareth and Rachel Henderson.

Following completion of the acquisition, Gareth and the management team will remain with the business. As a result of the transaction, Lakehouse’s total headcount will rise to approximately 1,400.

Lakehouse, who are based in Romford, Essex, offer a range of services covering wall insulation, loft insulation, heating systems, renewable energy and electric vehicle charging.

Formed in 1988, the company’s current turnover is around £300m.

In the financial year ended 31 August 2014, Orchard reported a turnover from continuing activities of £4.99 million and profit before tax of £0.88 million.

Orchard had gross assets of £5.9 million as at 31 August 2014.

Given anticipated near-term integration costs of the business, together with investment in systems and mobilising new activities, Lakehouse expects the acquisition to be earnings neutral in its first year.

Under the terms of the acquisition, the consideration comprises an initial amount payable in cash on completion of £7m and a further deferred consideration of up to £3m, payable on the basis of Orchard’s financial performance in period up to 30 September 2017.

Gareth Henderson, founder and managing director of Orchard, said: “We are delighted to be joining the group and supporting the continued growth of the businesses.

“Becoming part of Lakehouse allows us to offer an extended range of services to our existing customer base, as well as strengthening our mutual relationships with the major utilities firms.

“This leaves us well placed to build on our exceptional customer service record and to keep helping customers manage their energy costs.”