11th July 2016

Kent Periscopes Ltd – the military equipment supplier based in St Asaph, North Wales – has been acquired by the photonics technology company Gooch & Housego plc in a deal worth up to £9.5m.

Dow Schofield Watts and Hill Dickinson advised Kent on the deal. Founded in 2005, Kent is a specialist supplier of periscopes, vehicle sights and related equipment for land based armoured fighting vehicles (AFVs). It is a leading key supplier on major vehicle programmes to blue-chip military manufacturers. The company has an international customer list and a long-term order book in excess of £20m.

Gooch & Housego PLC, which is based in Ilminster, Somerset, is a specialist manufacturer of optical components and systems. The acquisition is in line with its strategic objectives of moving up the value chain and further diversifying its business in the aerospace and defence sector. The deal will allow Kent to achieve greater global reach through Gooch & Housego’s sales and business development teams and take advantage of its expertise in precision optics and specialist coatings.

The consideration will be up to £9.5 million, consisting of a £7m initial cash consideration and a deferred contingent consideration of up to £2.5m based upon the performance of the business over the next two years.

Craig Richardson and Gerard Lucas of Dow Schofield Watts provided corporate finance advice to Kent’s shareholders. Gerard Lucas, Director, commented: “Kent has established itself as one of the leading periscope and AFV sight suppliers in the world. The acquisition will allow it to benefit from the investment, operational and strategic support offered by Gooch & Housego to take the business to the next level and allow it to achieve its full potential.”

Hill Dickinson provided legal advice to Kent’s shareholders, with a team led by Ian Riggs, James Down and Anna Duxbury. Ian said: “Kent has proven capabilities, a strong market position and a committed, long-term order book which helps to underpin future revenues. This acquisition will allow it to further develop and realise its strategic aims.”

Mark Webster, Chief Executive Officer of Gooch & Housego, commented: “Kent is a well established business with an impressive list of international blue chip customers. We believe that G&H will enable this business to fulfil its true potential through leveraging our greater global reach and our complementary technological capabilities.”