This is the 16th annual report on the performance of portfolio companies, a group of large, private equity (PE) owned UK businesses that met defined criteria at the time of acquisition. Its publication is one of the steps adopted by the PE industry following the publication of guidelines by Sir David Walker to improve transparency and disclosure, under the oversight of the Private Equity Reporting Group (PERG).
This report addresses many questions that various stakeholders may have on the impact of PE ownership on large UK businesses, by presenting facts and benchmarks to provide answers. The report is designed to be read stand-alone, summarising the accumulated data over the past 16 years of reporting; it also contains comparisons with last year’s results and, for some measures, shows time series trends.
This year, the report covers 81 portfolio companies (as defined according to criteria set by the PERG) as at the 2022 financial reporting year (2021: 73), as well as a further 116 portfolio companies that have been owned and exited since 2005. The findings are based on aggregated information provided on the portfolio companies by the PE firms that own them — covering the entire period of PE ownership. This year, data was received covering 66 portfolio companies and one company has been given a first year exemption, resulting in a compliance rate of 83% (2021: 86%). On many measures of performance, the data on the current portfolio is combined with data from portfolio companies exited in 2022 and earlier, which provides over 100 data points, typically measuring performance over several years.
With a large number of portfolio companies, a high rate of compliance, and 16 years of information, this report provides comprehensive and detailed information on the effect of PE ownership on many measures of performance of an independently determined group of large UK businesses. The report comprises five sections:
- Section 1: Introduction
- Section 2: Summary findings
- Section 3: Detailed findings
- Section 4: Basis of findings
- Section 5: Appendix – objective and fact base
This report has been prepared by Ernst & Young LLP (EY) teams at the request of the British Private Equity and Venture Capital Association (BVCA) and the PERG. The BVCA has supported EY in its work, particularly by encouraging compliance amongst its members and non-members. As in prior years, we welcome comments and suggestions on this report by contacting the members listed at the end of this report.
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