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PE group exits hotel

Monday 10 December 2012 5:00

The boss of one of the region’s top rural hotels has bought out the last remaining stake held in the business by NVM Private Equity after 10 years of involvement from the PE firm.

Newcastle and London-based NVM Private Equity says it will achieve a two times money multiple on its original £4m investment in the Longhirst Group from the sale of Morpeth’s Longhirst Venues to its CEO, Stephen Cowell.

Longhirst Venues is the last part of the original investment in the Longhirst Group – the firm behind Northumberland’s Longhirst Hall - which NVM originally made in 2002.

Further funding was provided in 2004 to establish Develop Training – a company offering on-site training services across Longhirst’s venues.

In 2007, Develop Training was sold through a secondary buy-out for £15m to enable the business to open new training centres, make acquisitions and expand into other sectors.

Cowell said: “Longhirst Hall is one of Northumberland’s premier event venues and hotels, so I am delighted to be acquiring the remaining stake to take the business to its next stage of development.  I really appreciate the continued support NVM has provided over the years.”

Mauro Biagioni, director of NVM Private Equity, said: “Following the successful exit from Develop Training five years ago, we are delighted with the recent sale of Longhirst Venues.  NVM has enjoyed working with Stephen and his team over the last 10 years and we wish him every success for the future.”

Longhirst Hall was built by renowned local architect John Dobson as a private residence, and today specialises in conferences, private functions, weddings and bedroom accommodation for those wishing to explore rural Northumberland.

It recently announced that it won the Outstanding Customer Service Category in The North of England Wedding Awards 2012.