(Pictured left to right: Scott Lees, Hayden Turner, Andrew Harrison, Jasmin Turner, Camilla Turner, Marina Turner, Chris Turner, Andy Stafford, Cathy Rogers.)

A local Wigan accounting firm NR Barton, involved with Lifting Gear UK Group since their incorporation, has assisted with sale of long-standing client, Lifting Gear UK Group.

The sale which was lead by Grant Thornton completed just before the Christmas break and saw the Group acquired by Axel Johnson International, a Swedish based Group.

Formed in 2007, Lifting Gear UK is based in Skelmersdale, Lancashire, and was founded by Chris and Marina Turner. NR Barton have looked after the company and subsequently the Group since their formation.

The Group proudly sports 12 depots across England and Scotland and until the sale to Axel Johnson, was the largest privately owned lifting equipment provider in the UK.

Founder Chris Turner said: “I believe that Axel Johnson International is the ideal owner to help grow Lifting Gear UK’s business and brand recognition. I am confident that the group’s culture and know-how of the industry will support further growth of the company. I’d like to thank our loyal employees whose dedication and hard work has made the company the success it is today.”

Managing director Andrew Harrison added: “Becoming part of Lifting Solutions group will provide us with an excellent platform to further expand our presence and streamline our supply chain. We are looking forward to working closer with the group to further enhance our excellent customer service.”

Ralf Wiberg, Managing Director, Lifting Solutions, a business group within Axel Johnson International said: “We are very enthusiastic about this opportunity to expand our offering within the lifting rental market, which we believe will be a cornerstone in our future growth and increased focus on sustainable customer offers.

“Lifting Gear UK has a well-established brand and dedicated co-workers with a can-do attitude that we believe will contribute significantly to our group.”

The NR Barton team advising the shareholders compromised of Cathy Rogers, Scott Lees, Andrew Pilling and Emma Peers.

Cathy Rogers, a senior partner at NR Barton said: “Being part of Lifting Gear’s journey, in particularly with Chris and Marina, has been amazing. They have been a client from start-up and to see the Group grow over the years and now to see them be rewarded with such sale was really special to be a part of – working with them has been an absolute pleasure and I wish them all the very best in the future”

Scott Lees, the senior tax manager at NR Barton added “Having only been with NR Barton since the beginning of September 2021, I was quick to realise the value in the Lifting Gear Group. The acquisition is not only a great move for Axel Johnson on the business and commercial side, but they have acquired a business full of great people too”

The Grant Thornton team advising the shareholders comprised Usman Malik, Chris Ryan, Simon Keppie and James Boreman. Other advisers included Pinsent Masons (Lawyers) – James Skivington and Jonathan Fritz.

Axel Johnson was advised by law firm Knights (Matt Ainsworth and Michael Hall) and BHP (Financial and Tax DD).