Grant Thornton advises BVG Group/Airflo Fishing Airflo Fishing has been sold to Mayfly Outdoors

November 2019
BVG Group
Airflo Fishing
Adviser to BVG Group on their sale of the Airflo Fishing business to Mayfly Outdoors
Grant Thornton team
Sell side
Corporate finance
Flag of the United Kingdom

We are delighted to have advised Airflo Fishing on their sale to Mayfly Outdoors.

Acquired in 1996, Airflo Fishing Limited is a long-standing division of the BVG Group, a leading UK multi-channel retailer. The company operates the Airflo brand, which manufactures a complete range of specialist fly lines and polyleaders utilising proprietary PU technology. It is considered as one of the most innovative companies in the fly fishing industry, having many fly line firsts, including the use of tungsten, low stretch cores and being pioneers of welded loops. 

In 2018, the fishing business was deemed non-core to BVG group’s operations, so BVG engaged us to carry out a sale process having previously sold Hardy & Greys fishing business to a US buyer in 2013. 

Our corporate finance team worked closely with management to assess the options available and tailor the right approach for BVG, which resulted in the decision to carve out the Airflo brand and its operations from Airflo Fishing Limited. 

We ran a competitive process with a strategic list of key buyers, ensuring the right transaction and structure for management. 

BVG ultimately selected Mayfly Outdoors, based in Colorado, USA, as they showed the strongest interest and had a strong strategic fit - providing Mayfly with a foothold in the UK for distribution of their own products and Airflo access to distribution channels in the US market. 

We leveraged our international network to connect with all the key strategic players in the fishing market and helped BVG navigate the complex carve out process, utilising expertise across our firm to advise on the best structure for the transaction. We project managed all parties involved in the international transaction and delivered a smooth process to completion. 

We also secured another successful transaction for BVG Group after advising on Business Growth Fund’s investment in the group in 2015 and BVG’s acquisition of Thompson & Morgan in 2017. 

Grant Thornton's team were excellent throughout. This was a complex international transaction and they handled both the financial and commercial aspects of the deal with great skill.
Mike Rees Group Financial Director, BVG Group