17th September. Posted in News.

The current leadership team at coding and marking specialists, DataLase, has acquired full independence for the company through a management buyout (MBO) from SATO, the leading global provider of Auto-ID solutions.

With advisory assistance provided by international audit, accounting and consulting group, Mazars, and legal advice by UK law firm Shoosmiths, the deal was led by the firm’s COO & CFO, Clare Lewis, CSMO, Paul Dustain and CTO, Alexander (Ally) Grant. Completion took place on 15 Sep 20.

Based in Cheshire, DataLase was originally acquired by SATO in December 2016. The change in direction is centred on SATO’s strategic aim of concentrating resources on its auto-ID solutions business to build sustainable growth and enhance its corporate value, while DataLase looks to push forward with increased technological advancement and to further develop its Photonic Printing offering. Recognising these differing objectives, the two sides were able to come to an agreement on the transfer of shares.

“It is a really positive deal for the business and benefits all parties,” said Oliver Hoffman, National Head of M&A Mazars. “It has been great working with Clare, Paul and Ally, helping them transition from management into shareholders and I have every confidence the business will go from strength to strength under their ownership.”

“This was an exciting deal to be involved in and myself, Leah Cairney and Kendra McCullough were delighted to support such an insightful and knowledgeable management team,” said Andrew Millar, Corporate Partner at Shoosmiths law firm. “Clare [Lewis], Ally [Grant] and Paul [Dustain] clearly have a strong vision for DataLase and we share their belief that the potential for the brand is sky high.”

Commenting on the MBO, Clare Lewis, now CEO, said: “With an excellent understanding of the business and an appreciation of its future direction, the management team can now continue on the path of new product commercialisation and growing the legacy business. This new era of independence will allow us to become more dynamic and agile in our approach and, with some exciting new developments on the horizon, we look forward to unlocking further commercial success for DataLase. My thanks to Mazars and Shoosmiths for their contributions throughout the process.”

To support the changes at DataLase, the management team has undertaken a refresh of their corporate identity. The updated brand style includes the strapline ‘Connected Photonic Solutions’, referencing their innovative laser technology.