Epiris today announces that Epiris Fund II, advised by Epiris LLP, has agreed to acquire Inchcape Shipping Services (or “ISS”), one of the world’s largest maritime services providers. Financial terms are not being disclosed.

ISS is a global provider of maritime services to ship owners, operators and charterers. Founded in India in 1847, today ISS is headquartered in London and operates in more than 60 countries around the world. The company’s port agency division is present in more than 85% of the world’s ports where it handles all aspects of a port call – from arranging pilots, tugboats and mooring, to loading, unloading, clearing and forwarding freight, to resupplying, refuelling and crewing – for cargo, passenger and naval vessels, handling around $4 billion of transactions across more than 80,000 port calls annually. ISS’s marine services division provides spare parts and other products and services required by vessels during a port call.

ISS is run by Chief Executive Frank Olsen, an experienced maritime professional who joined the company in 2016.

Charles Elkington, Partner at Epiris, said:

“ISS is a global leader in a resilient market experiencing long-term growth, driven by ship owners’ and operators’ focus on cost effectiveness, sustainability and compliance. Frank and his team have made great strides towards building on this favourable backdrop – initiatives they have introduced include, for example, the SmartPay international payments system – and we look forward to working with them to grow the business further.”

Alex Fortescue, Managing Partner at Epiris, said:

“This is the tenth investment we have made for Epiris Fund II and, yet again, one which is emblematic of our approach: backing a global market leader with untapped potential and where our experience in strategy, operational excellence and M&A can be used to help the team transform the business.”

Frank Olsen, Chief Executive of ISS, said:

“Epiris is making a transformative investment that will enable us to build on our already successful business model to achieve our vision of supporting global trade with a best-in-class, digitally-enabled platform serving customers’ needs in every port, everywhere. We are extremely excited about working with Alex, Charles and the rest of the Epiris team towards that goal.”

The Epiris team on the deal is Alex Fortescue, Charles Elkington, Alex Wilby, Thayne Forbes and Scott Forbes. Epiris is advised by Latham & Watkins, PwC and Zeus Capital. Debt facilities are provided by funds managed by the Credit Group of Ares Management Corporation.


For Epiris LLP please contact:

Greenbrook Communications

Robert White, Matthew Goodman, Daniel Oliver

+44 (0)20 7952 2000



For Inchcape Shipping Services please contact:

David Barker

Global Marketing and Communications Manager

+44 (0)20 3929 8412 EX 647774



About Epiris

Epiris is a top-decile* private equity firm which invests in opportunities to transform businesses in partnership with exceptional management teams. It targets control positions in UK-headquartered businesses with an enterprise value of between £75 million and £500 million, deploying between £40 million and £150 million of equity.

Fund I

Between 2011 and 2016 Epiris invested £1 billion in buyouts and loan-to-own debt investments in respect of which it has delivered a gross IRR of 38%*. Synthetic net returns from this portfolio are in the top-decile of European private equity funds of comparable vintages.

Fund II

Epiris Fund II is an institutional private equity fund raised in 2017. Investments made by Fund II include Portals, one of the world’s leading manufacturers of “substrate” for banknotes; TI Media, one of the largest consumer magazine publishers in the UK, which the Fund sold to Future plc for £140 million in April 2020, generating a return of 2.1x MOIC, a 44% IRR; The Club Company, the UK’s largest country club operator; Bonhams, the global auction house; Diamorph, a supplier of advanced material solutions for demanding and safety-critical applications; IFG, a financial services business comprising Nucleus, an investment platform, as well as Saunderson House, an independent wealth manager and financial adviser which the Fund sold to Rathbone Brothers Plc for £150 million in October 2021; The Big Table, a leading UK restaurant operator; Sharps, the UK’s leading supplier of bespoke fitted bedroom furniture; and Stuart Turner, a producer of pumps and water-boosting products for residential and commercial uses.

For further information, please visit www.epiris.co.uk.

Issued by Epiris which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

*As at 31 December 2021. Gross IRR does not reflect adjustments for investment management and administration costs. Comparator data supplied by Preqin. Past performance is no guarantee of future results.