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  • Merkland Tank (“Merkland”) can trace its origins to the 1880’s in the Glasgow ship servicing industry, provides a range of engineering services associated with tanks and vessels. Typical works include tank cleaning, inspection, installation and decommissioning. Its specialisms include Ministry of Defence contracts, refineries, distilleries and the oil and gas industry.

    Business development during Nevis ownership

    • Merkland has been continually growing over the last decade and Robbie Horne, the third generation owner who has been leading the business for more than 35 years, decided that he wanted to step back and realise the value he had created.
    • In October 2017 Nevis Capital completed the acquisition of Merkland from Robbie. On completion, Robert Gibson joined the business as Managing Director with Robbie Horne stepping up to a part time Chairman role.



    • Speaking about the recent sale of his business, Robbie said “As a business we have a tremendous heritage from the original ship servicing works to steel work contracts, and have become a leader in our field due to the quality and dedication of our outstanding team. I believe this transaction is the start of a new phase in the company’s growth and I am looking forward to working with Nevis, Robert and the rest of the team to deliver our wider services.”


    Brian Aitken

    Ian Buchan, Partner

    James Pirrie, Partner

    John Pirrie, Partner

    Apex logo

    Apex Generators (“Apex”) specialises in the hire of power generation equipment and offers a range of diesel generators and ancillary products.

    Business development during Nevis ownership

    • The business was formed in November 2009 when Nevis acquired Woodside Power and re-branded it as Apex Generators.
    • We brought in experienced management to augment the existing Woodside Power team and supported them to relocate the business and implement an ISO accredited integrated management system within six months.
    • This facilitated a market leading level of customer service which helped drive sales into new sectors and geographies.
    • To support this growth, Nevis and its banking partners provided the finance to increase the hire fleet from 10mVA to 45mVA.
    • During our ownership, sales quadrupled and what had been a breakeven business generated EBITDA in excess of £1.7m per annum.
    • In 2013, Nevis identified HSS Hire Group as a potential trade acquirer of the business and initiated discussions about combining Apex with their existing Abird business.
    • Having built a strong relationship with the HSS team, we sold Apex to them in March 2014.

    The success of Apex was driven by the combination of a strong management team complemented by the strategic support of Nevis. Robert Gibson, who led the Apex management team, commented:

    “Nevis brought the experience, finance and mindset for growth that we needed and were instrumental in the development of the business. Their straight-forward approach and ability to support us when required made them the ideal partner for a growing business.”

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