Two well-known North East entrepreneurs have taken their first steps into the healthcare sector with the acquisition of a successful Teesside equipment supplier.

Richard and Julie Bennett, owners of specialist regional print and design firm Newcastle Print Solutions (NPS), have purchased Caremore Services of Redcar from directors Peter Moore and David Caley for an undisclosed sum.

The acquisition has followed on from the Bennetts, who were the founders of Derwentside Environmental Testing, being asked by NPS clients during the pandemic to use their knowledge of and contacts in the scientific sector to source items of personal protective equipment (PPE) that were proving difficult to find.

Established for more than 15 years, Caremore Services provides medical and janitorial  products to regional clients in the healthcare and care home sector, as well as a range of other items, including electric profiling beds, shower chairs, medical hoists, lifting slings, pressure reducing and relieving products and furniture.

Michael Cantwell, head of corporate finance at Gosforth-based RMT Accountants and Business Advisors, lead on the acquisition on behalf of the Bennetts, with Alex Wilby, partner at Swinburne Maddison LLP in Durham, providing them with legal advice.  Craig Malarkey, partner at Tilly Bailey & Irvine LLP, provided legal advice to the vendors.

Richard Bennett says: “Since acquiring NPS three years ago, we’ve focused on providing an extensive range of commercial print to customers both within and outside the North East, but as the pandemic hit, they began to ask us for help in sourcing much needed PPE as supplies were scarce and difficult to access.

“With our scientific background and contacts, it was an area in which we had quite a bit of knowledge, and we were able to obtain the items that our customers needed.

“As soon as we became aware that Caremore Services was up for sale, we jumped at the chance to acquire it as it was a perfect strategic fit for our business and allowed us to formalise our entry into the healthcare sector.

“The business has developed a strong reputation for the supply of goods and services to the healthcare sector over many years that is based on trust and dependable delivery, and we’re confident that we can build on this to make it even more successful.

“The excellent support we’ve had from the RMT and Swinburne Maddison teams has helped the transaction to progress smoothly and we’re looking forward to taking advantage of the opportunities that we know are ahead of us.”

Michael Cantwell, head of corporate finance at RMT Accountants, adds: “Richard and Julie know what it takes to build successful businesses, and this latest acquisition will allow them to ally their commercial and scientific knowledge and expertise to great effect.”

Alex Wilby, partner at Swinburne Maddison LLP, says: “Having worked with Richard and Julie for a number of years and on a number of projects, it’s fantastic to have been able to successfully work through a number of tricky issues and to assist in concluding their latest acquisition.  Equally, it was a pleasure to work alongside Michael whose advice was as expert and pragmatic as ever.”