Lovells, Macfarlanes bag roles on Maximuscle sale

Lovells and Macfarlanes have played key roles on a private equity secondary exit, with the former acting for vendor Piper Private Equity while the latter advised buyer Darwin Private Equity.

Lovells, which secured the instruction at a competitive auction, guided its client through the £75m sale of sports nutrition giant Maximuscle to Darwin Private Equity.

Alan Greenough, head of private equity at the firm, led the team acting for Piper with the assistance of senior associate Amit Nayyar and associate Claire McCluggage.

Greenough said: “It was the right time for Piper to exit after three or four successful years. It was an enticing package and was interesting to deal with difficulties in the debt markets. I believe such difficulties are unlikely to go away in the near future.”

The transaction was the first attempted by Darwin Private Equity, which, according to Macfarlanes corporate partner Stephen Drewitt, “added a bit of spice to the deal”.

He added: “We helped Darwin raise its fund. In terms of the deal, it was relatively straightforward although this being its first, it was heavily focused.”

Darwin is an independent private equity firm that targets the lower mid-market in the UK.

Pinsent Masons partner Andrew Masraf advised Maximuscles’ management team.