Frank Howard Tools logo.
Frank Howard Tools & Fixings Ltd

Case Studies

Future-proofing a tools & fixings stockist

Frank Howard Tools & Fixings is one of the largest independent tool stockists in Essex, with branches in Braintree, Chelmsford, and Bishops Stortford. The company also specialises in plastics for the building trade.

Founded in 1988, Frank Howard Tools & Fixings has grown in reputation to become a comprehensive supplier of tools and materials to the building trade, local authorities, industrial market, as well as keen DIYers. The company represents a stable of industry-leading brands, including Makita, Bosch, Festool, and more.

Over 33 years of trading, the business grew to hold an annual revenue of £11m. The shareholder was looking to make a semi-retirement move. Following an introduction by a broker and thanks to historic relationships with my existing portfolio companies, I already had a huge insight into the company. The owner and I clicked with each other straight away and we were soon confirmed as his ideal partner and a perfect cultural fit. Over and above the sale, the owner had great respect for his staff and their capabilities. It was mission-critical that any arrangement made would not negatively affect the team in any way.

Business objectives

My approach

I recently sold my business through a broker. During this journey I met Stephen who partly owned and represented Ascot Capital Ltd as a potential buyer of my business. The initial online meeting was relaxed, well prepared, and he answered many of my worries about a possible sale while gaining a clear insight into my business.

Five parties were interested in the business. However, following further meetings with Stephen it became clear that he was our best way forward. Post completion, I’m pleased to see the business is in good hands and our staff is already seeing the benefits and opportunities under the new ownership.

Frank Howard,