LAVA Advisory Partners strengthens foothold in education and training sector with AIRDAT EOT deal. Read more.

LAVA Advisory Partners strengthens foothold in education and training sector with AIRDAT EOT deal

LAVA Advisory Partners has marked another milestone in the aviation technology and training industry by successfully facilitating AIRDAT, a leading provider of airport safety systems, training, and consultancy services, into an Employee Ownership Trust (EOT). 

Before deciding to transition AIRDAT into an EOT, Charles Cardwell, the company’s founder, was approached by numerous potential buyers and explored various exit strategies, including selling to trade or private equity. Throughout this period of consideration, LAVA Advisory Partners stood as a trusted advisor to Charles, providing invaluable insights and guidance.  

Recognising Charles’s objectives and valuing the progressive workplace culture AIRDAT had cultivated since its establishment in 2006, LAVA advised that an EOT would be more advantageous than a private sale. 

AIRDAT, since its inception, has heavily invested in its workplace, trialling innovative initiatives like the successful implementation of a four-day working week after a year-long trial. With LAVA’s understanding of this dedication and forward-thinking ethos, it became evident that employee ownership would seamlessly align with the company’s core values. 

The EOT presented a compelling solution that valued the employees’ loyalty and contribution to the business. It allows for long-term investment decisions, offering employees reassurance over their future and creating an environment for management to continue to drive AIRDAT’s growth trajectory. 

Choosing LAVA as our advisors was the best possible decision for AIRDAT’s future. The LAVA team demonstrated thorough knowledge and remarkable skill throughout the transaction. Introducing the EOT concept was a testament to their depth of understanding of AIRDAT’s unique culture and I’m excited to see AIRDAT continue to thrive under this new setup.

Charles Cardwell Founder of AIRDAT 

The AIRDAT transition marks LAVA’s fourth EOT, following completed deals in a variety of sectors, including consumer retail with Park Cameras, furniture manufacturing with Lebus Upholstery, and printing with Greens Printing Services. These achievements illustrate LAVA’s versatility and adaptability in finding human-led solutions that prioritise cultural compatibility, as well as financial results. 

Building on its credentials in the education and training sector, LAVA’s latest deal also demonstrates the firm’s expertise within this broad field where investor and consolidator appetite continues to thrive. 

AIRDAT’s transition to an EOT underscores LAVA’s dedication towards offering tailored, client-centric solutions. This deal not only further establishes our position in the education and training industry but also showcases our expertise in managing non-traditional deals such as EOTs successfully. We look forward to supporting AIRDAT’s team as they go from strength to strength under employee ownership

Millie Counsell Associate at LAVA Advisory Partners

Following the recent AIRDAT deal, LAVA is excited to forge new industry-shaping partnerships, demonstrating its dedication to innovative M&A solutions and highlighting its focus on the growing intersection of education, training and technology. 

For a confidential discussion of your own specific M&A needs, please feel free to contact our team