handl Group announces its biggest deal yet

CEO shares growth plans

handl Group announces its biggest deal yet

Mergers & Acquisitions

By Roxanne Libatique

Lancashire-based portfolio management company handl Group has further built its presence in the UK health and wellbeing sector by acquiring Suffolk-based IPRS Group (Injury, Prevention, and Rehabilitation Services).

The IPRS Group, which achieved a £17 million turnover in 2020, is an independent specialist organisation offering a diverse range of clinical products and services to the public and private sectors. It has four brands:

  • IPRS Health: Focuses on physiotherapy, mental health, and wellbeing for the insurance, corporate, NHS and occupational health sectors;
  • IPRS Mediquipe: Distributes Biodex functional assessment, rehabilitation equipment, and training to elite sports, universities, and the NHS;
  • IPRS Aeromed: Supplies paramedic led, medical repatriation, and other specialist services; and
  • PFAS: Independent provider of quality medical assessments delivered in-house using specialist health practitioners.

The acquisition, the biggest deal yet completed by handl Group, will see the IPRS Group’s four brands become part of the portfolio management company. Meanwhile, all trade will continue under existing brands, and all 300 IPRS Group employees and the senior management team will stay with the company – with Martyn Jackson remaining as CEO, reporting to handl Group CEO Graham Pulford, and leading the company through the changes.

Jackson commented: “It was quickly apparent from my discussions with Graham and the team that handl Group will be the best possible custodian for our company and our clients.”

Commenting on the company’s biggest deal yet, Pulford said he expects the IPRS Group to give handl Group additional scale and new distribution channels in private medical insurance (PMI) and elite sport, an IPRS Group specialism. He also expects the acquisition to strengthen handl Group’s relationship with the UK insurance industry.

“It is the biggest acquisition handl Group has completed to date, and we intend to support IPRS Group’s ambitious growth plans through additional investment, access to the skilled people at handl, and also the acceleration of their already advanced digital offerings,” Pulford said.

With a proven growth model, handl Group aims to further enhance its market presence following several contract wins this year – both renewals and new businesses.

“There will also be a definite opportunity to sell the unique services of IPRS to existing handl customers,” Pulford said.

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