Case study

Forest Holidays: Partnership expands footprint

Management buyout and continued backing supporting sustainable growth by doubling cabin numbers during five-year partnership.

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Sector
  • Travel & leisure

Forest Holidays owns and operates secluded eco-cabins and treehouses on nine sites across Britain’s National Forests

Employees: 550

Deal type
  • Management buyout
Exit type
  • Private equity sale
Exit date

19/12/2017

Current
  • Reinvested
Re-investment date

19/12/2017

Forest Holidays owns and operates secluded eco-cabins and treehouses on sites across Britain’s National Forests, with a focus on sustainability and full integration with the environment.

Supporting new sites

In September 2012 LDC completed a significant investment to support a management buyout and the roll-out of new Forest Holidays sites. This was followed a year later with follow-on funding to support the management team’s new site expansion in Hampshire.

During the first five years of the partnership, cabin numbers more than doubled and EBITDA increased from under £1m to in excess of £10m.

During the same period, the company grew to own 571 cabins across nine sites, with a further two in the pipeline in Snowdonia and the Brecon Beacons. Once those sites were completed, over half of its locations were within Britain’s National Parks.

Forest Holidays’ strategy and vision has enabled the Company to grow to 571 cabins in nine stunning locations across the UK. I would like to thank LDC for their faith in investing in the Company in 2012 and for being a very supportive partner over the last five years.”
Bruce McKendrick, CEO
Forest Holidays

Growth recognition

In December 2017 LDC completed the sale of Forest Holidays to Phoenix Equity Partners. As part of the transaction, LDC reinvested for a significant minority stake, alongside the Forestry Commission and the management team.

The company’s growth journey continues. In April 2018 the 19th annual Sunday Times BDO Profit Track 100 league table was published, with Forest Holidays ranking 4th due to the business’ profits growing by an average of 130 per cent a year.

Awards

Social Responsibility Management Team of the Year

Forest Holidays – Midlands BVCA Management Team Awards

The Sunday Times Profit Track 100

2018