Management buyout sees new era for specialist engineer

MANROCHEM, a process engineering specialist, has undergone a management buyout.

The new owners of the Huddersfield-based firm, which has a turnover of between £1.2m and £1.5m, are Edward Jennings, business director; David Wakefield, technical director; and Andrew Pearson, engineering director.

Prior to the buyout, the financial details of which were not disclosed, Manrochem was owned by Mr Wakefield and Russ Harding, who was projects director.

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Speaking to the Yorkshire Post, Mr Jennings said that Mr Harding will be leaving the company at the end of April to “explore other avenues”.

With skills based in process engineering, Manrochem delivers specialist design, build and commission projects across the chemical, pharmaceutical, food and allied industries.

Established in 1990, Manrochem employs 20 people in the UK at its Huddersfield headquarters and also has a subsidiary company in Chennai in India. 

It has a blue chip client base including companies such as Syngenta, Lubrizol, GlaxoSmithKline, 3M Healthcare, Rhodia UK, Thornton & Ross, Finlay and Deltech.

Mr Jennings said: “Having established Manrochem’s reputation as a dynamic and well-regarded international process design company, this acquisition marks another key milestone in the development of the business.  With an experienced management team at the helm, we will be able to build on the company’s success, ensuring its future.”

He added: “In the last 12 to 18 months, we’ve increased sales and profits have increased.

“We’ve added new blue chip companies to our client base and new systems have been incorporated in the business, which has helped increase profitability.”

The business is currently recruiting, said Mr Jennings, adding: “We are constantly looking for chemical engineers.

“I think we’ll take on between two and six in the next six to 12 months.”

Mr Wakefield said: “We work in a rapidly-changing world and our ability to respond swiftly to meet new challenges is greatly appreciated by our clients. 

“We are excited by the prospect of extending our skills and expertise to a wider client base as we move forward.”

Mr Pearson said: “We have a loyal, dedicated and highly qualified workforce, the majority of whom have been with the company for many years.

“We are confident that with their enthusiasm and support, the new regime will go from strength to strength.”

The management team was advised by Rachel Neems and Maxine Burton of Leeds law firm Clarion, with Richard Bright and Mike Brown of Murray Harcourt in Harrogate providing financial advice for the transaction.