Carlyle Cardinal Ireland sells stake in cash transit company

Deal for General Secure Logistics Services sees CCI doubling its money on investment

Carlyle Cardinal Ireland (CCI) has sold its majority stake in one of the State’s largest cash-in-transit management services businesses for an undisclosed sum.

European fund manager Star Capital Partners has acquired the 51.1 per cent stake in General Secure Logistics Services (GSLS) that CCI obtained in a deal valued at about €30 million in September 2014..

CCI, a €292 million fund which is jointly owned and run by US player Carlyle and the Irish-owned Cardinal Capital group, is believed to have doubled its money on its original €30 million investment.

The acquisition comes shortly after GSLS agreed a €20 million refinancing with Bank of Ireland that was reportedly funded by €17 million of loans from CCI, with the rest spread between bank debt and equity.


GSLS, the only Irish-owned nationwide provider of cash-in-transit services, has been in operation for more than 12 years.

The joint venture is thought to have invested about €5 million in the company over the last three years, a period during which the company relocated from its existing 10,000sq ft premises to a state-of-the-art 40,000sq ft building on the outskirts of Dublin.

GSLS, which also has an office in Limerick, has seen turnover increase from €10.8 million in 2014 to €17 million last year. Employee numbers have almost doubled to more than 200 people.

CCI is targeting at least three acquisitions in 2018, a year it believes will be a record one for private equity locally.

The company, which sold its €15 million stake in Lily O'Brien's to Colian Holdings for €40 million in late December, primarily invests in buyout and growth equity opportunities in mid-market companies, with investments ranging from €5 million to €50 million on deals that range in size from about €20 million to about €150 million.

The company has made eight acquisitions in Ireland in recent years, the most recent being the €50 million takeover of pharmacy chain Sam McCauley Chemists, which was completed last August.

Other investments include stakes in payment processing firm Payzone, food group Carroll Cuisine and motoring organisation AA Ireland.

Charlie Taylor

Charlie Taylor

Charlie Taylor is a former Irish Times business journalist