System builder Stone Group has asserted it is still targeting acquisitions and could close another deal within a couple of weeks.
In April, the education specialist underwent its second management buy-out in three years. At the time, chief executive James Bird claimed he wanted to swell the company’s annual turnover to £100m through acquisition. Within six weeks Stone had snapped up competitor Rock after it fell into administration.
Bird remained tight-lipped on the profile of possible acquisition targets, but added: “We are definitely still on the acquisition trail and talks are continuing. I have heard a lot of rumours; some are close, some are miles away.”
Fellow public sector specialist Viglen has been linked to a possible deal. The firm saw its 2007 turnover drop more than 10 per cent to £45.6m while profits fell from more than £4m to about £120,000.
Bob Tarzey, service director at Quocirca, said: “This could be a bargain time to buy if a firm is struggling. If there is a market downturn, it can be a good time to consolidate into a single market offering, particularly for public sector specialists.”
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