Inprova acquires award-winning energy consultancy


Cheshire-based procurement outsourcing service company Inprova Group has bought UES Energy to further expand its energy services offer.

UES Energy, based in Caerphilly, near Cardiff, has been purchased from its two owners for an undisclosed sum. Both main shareholders, Andrew Diplock and Gruff Dodd, will join the senior leadership team within Inprova’s fast-growing energy division.

The move will consolidate Inprova’s position as one of the UK’s leading energy procurement consultancies and further its aim to be a top five third party intermediary (TPI) for energy brokerage.

Inprova Group’s latest purchase forms part of ambitious plans to at least double the size of its business over the next two to three years and further acquisitions are planned. Last year leading mid-market private equity house LDC invested in the business to help support Inprova’s future growth plans. The firm already procures more than £0.5bn of goods and services per year for clients in the logistics, private equity, health, local government and housing markets and provides a wide range of outsourcing, consultancy and technology services.

UES Energy was launched in 2003, since then it has grown a client base that covers locations across the UK in a number of sectors including manufacturing, food, education, service and leisure. Clients include companies that are major utilities themselves, such as National Grid plc and Wales & West Utilities, along with G4S, Celtic Manor Resort, PHS Group, Zodiac Aerospace and Wiley publishing group.

UES Energy procures and manages over £150m of energy contracts on clients’ behalf and turnover is expected to be in excess of £2m this financial year. The firm analyses energy prices, validates utility bills and reports on energy usage to deliver value to client organisations.

The deal, funded through a debt facility from Barclays, follows Inprova Group’s acquisition of two non-domestic energy brokers, energyTEAM and ENER-G Procurement, in April. The two have since been integrated into Inprova’s new energy division, branded energyTEAM, tripling the company’s workforce.

UES Energy, which has 20 staff, will also become part of the energy division over the next 12 months.

Paul Kennedy, Inprova Group Chief Executive, said: “This deal further consolidates Inprova’s growing energy services offer and brings us closer to our ambition to be among the top five TPIs in the country. UES Energy complements the world class services, expertise and knowledge we already have in our new energy division and will enable us to continue to expand our service offer to existing customers and reach new markets.

This is a critical and complex area of spend for so many organisations and it is vital that they can access leading edge services for support.

Acquiring UES Energy and welcoming Andrew and Gruff to the business is the latest step towards establishing Inprova Group as an international force in the procurement markets.”

Andrew Diplock, Managing Director of UES Energy, was named Business Person of the Year at the Energy Live Consultancy Awards in 2015 – the latest in a long line of accolades won by UES Energy and its staff in recent years.

Andrew Diplock said: “I’m looking forward to a very exciting future with Inprova Group. Being part of an ambitious business will enable us to play a key part in taking the energy consultancy business to a completely new level.

That was what made the deal so appealing – the opportunity to be part of a larger, fast-growing firm that will be a leading player nationally and internationally.”

Advisors on the transactions were Fieldfisher (legal), Dow Schofield Watts (corporate finance and financial due diligence), PMSI (commercial due diligence) and BDO (tax) for Inprova Group and Capital Law (legal) and Advantage Accountancy & Advisory (corporate finance).