Completion of our second acquisition

Vanilla Electronics Ltd (“Vanilla”), with the support of Literacy Capital, has today announced the completion of its second acquisition – a Wiltshire based electronics manufacturing services business, Interconics Ltd (“Interconics”).

The strategic acquisition sees Vanilla increase its scalability and capability in complex electronics manufacturing services, whilst providing a stronger foothold in higher volume Printed Circuit Board (“PCB”) assembly, to its global manufacturing customer base.

Founded in 1987, by Dave Weston, Interconics is now regarded as the one of the market leaders in the medium to high volume, high complexity, manufacturing niche. Interconics has worked hard and invested significantly to establish an excellent reputation in the automated manufacture of cutting-edge PCB assemblies and the management team has ensured that the business remains close to its core values, based primarily on service and capability.

Vanilla, formed in 2002, provide supply chain services to global technology manufacturers, consolidating their typically complex supply chains, leading to operational and financial benefits and longevity in the relationships. Shipping over a million parts per day from their 25,000 square foot automated warehouse, Vanilla offers a fully outsourced service. From design, material procurement, kitting, and manufacturing, through to end-customer order fulfilment, product returns, warranty, repair, and re-supply.

In March 2021, Vanilla completed the acquisition of Bela Electronic Designs, a leading provider of PCB design and low to medium volume manufacturing services, serving as the Group’s new product introduction facility in Bedford, UK.

Dan Croft, Group Chief Executive Officer, said: “Interconics’ technical and highly proficient automated manufacturing services provide group customers the ability to quickly scale their higher volume products, retaining manufacture within the UK. The acquisition perfectly complements Vanilla’s fast-growing group, which now covers the end-to-end spectrum from new product introduction, supply chain management, and volume manufacturing.”

Dave Weston, MD at Interconics, will take up a new role as Group Chief Technical Officer, using his vast experience to add valuable input to both existing Interconics customers and new Group customers. Dave said: “Thanks to all those who have helped me develop Interconics over the past 34 years, with a particular thank you to the incredibly loyal and passionate workforce. We’ve developed long term partnerships with many customers, suppliers and equipment suppliers such as Yamaha, pushing the boundaries of electronic design and manufacture. This new collaboration with the Vanilla Group is a great opportunity to provide a new level of growth, where those existing partnerships will continue to flourish, and Interconics will continue to pave the way in electronics manufacturing. I am thoroughly looking forward to my new Group role, where I will continue with equal pace and enthusiasm, but with additional investment and scale.”

Gary Wearing, Group Chief Operations Officer, will also step into the position of Managing Director of Interconics, leading the business with the close guidance of Dave Weston, Dan Croft and Matt Negus (Group Chief Financial Officer). Gary has previously held senior roles in technology businesses and looks forward to working closely with the team. Gary said: “this exciting partnership will enable Interconics to further expand its manufacturing service business, with the full support and complementary services of the other Group companies. It’s a fantastic fit and a great opportunity for the existing team at Interconics. The whole Group can look forward to the next stage of growth with excitement and optimism.”

The Group continues to look at other acquisitions that add technical, regional, and commercial value to the newly enlarged business and its customers.

We are grateful to our advisers for their work on this transaction, including but not limited to:

Birketts LLP advised Vanilla and Literacy Capital on the acquisition, led by Corporate Partner Ed Savory with support from Private Equity Partner Adam Jones, Alex Forwood and Macauley Alsford.

Squire Patton Boggs (UK) LLP advised the shareholders of Interconics Limited on the sale led by UK Head of Private Equity Paul Mann, Senior Associate Louisa Hine and Associate Indy Bening.

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