Covpress Acquisition Scoops International Deal Of The Year

Irwin Mitchell’s Birmingham Banking Team Advised On High Profile Transaction


David Shirt, Press Officer | 0161 838 3094

Irwin Mitchell’s Banking & Finance team in Birmingham is celebrating after an acquisition that it advised on picked up a prestigious industry prize at the Midlands Dealmakers Awards last night (18 September).

In what was one of the most fiercely competitive categories, the acquisition of automotive supplier Covpress by Shandong Yongtai and Shropshire-based TIA (GB) Treadsetters Ltd, was named International Deal of the Year.

Covpress employs over 450 people at its plant in Canley and is one of the oldest manufacturing firms in the world.  In addition to producing body panels for clients including Jaguar Land Rover, Nissan and Renault, Covpress is also a major supplier of the new generation of gas meters for the European market.

Following the deal last year, Covpress announced plans to build a £200m, 500,000 sq. ft. plant in Shandong province. The move is expected to create 5,000 jobs.

The multi-million pound transaction was financed through a combination of equity, debt from Chinese bank BOCOMM and asset backed facilities provided by ABN AMRO.

Irwin Mitchell’s Banking & Finance team in Birmingham, led by Partner Jon Bew, advised two divisions of ABN AMRO based in the UK and in Holland. The funding structure was a first for ABN AMRO.

In addition to the Covpress deal, two other deals that Irwin Mitchell advised on in the last 12 months were short-listed for an award on the evening.

In the ‘Development Finance Deal of the Year’ category, Irwin Mitchell advised Close Brothers on its £7m funding deal for Ash & Lacy Building Systems. The team also worked with Lloyds Bank Commercial Finance which provided an ABL package to fund Wright Industries’ purchase of Castle Microwave, a deal shortlisted in the 'SME Deal of the Year' category.

Irwin Mitchell Banking & Finance acts on a wide range of domestic and cross-border financing arrangements, provides advice on mainstream term and revolving loan facilities. It also has a particular specialism in asset based lending (ABL), including trade, inventory and equipment finance as well as supplier finance.

Earlier this year, the team announced that it had advised on over 90 transactions with an aggregate value of £1.2bn within its first 15 months since launch.

Jon Bew, Head of Banking & Finance at Irwin Mitchell in Birmingham, who also presented the award for Bank of the Year to HSBC at the ceremony, said:

"We are delighted to have advised on the Covpress deal and very pleased that it has picked up this prestigious award.

"The transaction was a significant deal in the West Midlands region which not only highlighted the attractiveness of our regional manufacturing base to buyers overseas, but also demonstrated how asset based lending complements traditional sources of funding and traditional transaction structures.

"To have three transactions that we advised on nominated is testament to the hard work of the entire Birmingham office of Irwin Mitchell."