Debt specialist offers potential lifeline to taxi leader

Add to My Stories Print page Add to Favourites

Cerberus Capital Management, the US private equity firm best known for investing in distressed assets, is holding talks with the owner of the heavily indebted up-market taxi firm Addison Lee. Investors say that this offers a potential lifeline for the company in increasingly urgent attempts to find a buyer, in the face of a need to refinance debt next year.

Addison Lee has been owned by Carlyle since 2015 and a sale process handled by Bank of America Merril Lynch and Rothschild has been happening sporadically for several months. Initial hopes that Carlyle would show a healthy profit on its investment have evaporated in the face of mounting losses and apparent difficulty in refinancing around £200m of debt which falls due next April. The company has annual turnover of more than £350m but generated a loss of £39m in its last published accounts.

Last month, it was reported that creditors at a number of options for taking control of the company and speculation suggests that a number of bids have been received which offer little or no premium to the company’s net debt. The risk of a pre-pack administration being required to enable the company to be sold seems to have grown and it is said that Carlyle wishes to resolve the situation before the year-end.

It is not clear what price Cerberus is offering, or even if it has submitted a formal bid but investors say that it would be well placed to take on the business, with much experience of restructuring such companies and that it could offer a solution to the problem.

Cerberus is not willing to comment.

You are using a Trial account

Thank you for trying Acquisitions Daily. You have read out of 2 articles.

If you want to read more than 2 articles, please contact us below to discuss a subscription.

Subscription Enquiry

If you are outside of the UK, please add your international dial code, e.g +33.