Sovereign Capital Partners sells the Linnaeus Group

The Linnaeus Group, a leading UK veterinary services provider, has been sold by private equity firm Sovereign Capital Partners for an undisclosed sum, in what the investor says is  its biggest sale yet.

Sold to Mars Petcare’s Veterinary Health Group, the Linnaeus Group has grown to 87 sites, 1,400 staff and an EBITA increase of more than 700%.

Sovereign says the exit, which will be its seventh from its SCLP III fund, will generate the investor’s strongest ever gross return.

Neil Cox, a partner at Sovereign, said: ‘[This] has been a fantastic growth journey and reflects our commitment to partnering with strong businesses and management teams to deliver growth, whether organically or through strategic acquisitions. We wish the management team and the business every success for the future.’

Lynne Hill, chief executive of the Linnaeus Group, said: ‘Our expansion with Sovereign has been both pacey and exciting. It’s not just that Sovereign have supported our M&A activity, their commitment to investing in the best, focusing on what really matters, and providing development funding has been fantastic. We look forward to continuing to develop Linnaeus further over the years ahead.’

The Linnaeus Group offers a range of veterinary services, including orthopaedics, ophthalmology, neurology, soft tissue surgery, internal medicine, oncology, dermatology and cardiology services.