Kelling Group


Kelling Group

Kelling Group

Sector: Business Services

Status: Realised

Fund: I

Deal type: Management buyout

Investment date: August 2014

Realisation date: January 2018

We helped the burgeoning Kelling Group transform to a fast-growing, multi-product leasing-style business in a niche market.

Yorkshire-based Kelling Group was initially two businesses known as Access Hire Nationwide and Welfare Hire Nationwide, which provided specialist equipment to infrastructure and related markets. 

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Kelling Group

Kelling quote image

“The quality of the Elysian team was exceptional and I found it very reassuring to have that depth of experience sitting on the board, engaging in the business and being at the end of a phone line. Elysian are very professional, very pragmatic and very supportive. They helped us instil the correct corporate disciplines, helped us put things in place that should be in place, helped and encouraged us to become a better business.” 

John Wood

Chief Executive, Kelling Group

Kelling Group

Kelling investment rationale

Investment rationale

Kelling Group had a unique business model whereby it leased vehicle mounted access platforms on a long-term basis (Access Hire Nationwide) and provided towable mobile welfare units and welfare vans (Welfare Hire Nationwide) to construction and infrastructure sites.

These two business lines had a fantastic opportunity to work closely together, with the company’s own fleet easily attaching to and towing the welfare pods – a design for which Kelling Group owned the intellectual property.

From just two depots, the company covered most of the UK. Our operational and strategic expertise would help drive Kelling Group’s high organic growth as increased regulation meant greater demand for on-site welfare and safety when working at height.


At the time of investment, the business was largely reliant on Access Hire Nationwide and had a small but growing welfare business.

We sold our stake in Kelling Group in January 2018 to Alinda Capital Partners, one of the world’s largest infrastructure firms and a long-term investor in infrastructure assets that provide essential services to communities.

Under our ownership, the company:

  • Rebranded from Access Hire Nationwide to Kelling Group, with clear sub brands in Access Hire and Welfare Hire.
  • Expanded its fleet to meet growing demand, from 828 in August 2014 to 1424 by the time of our exit.
  • Reorganised the sales and marketing function to increase customer coverage.
  • Opened a third, southern depot to better serve London and the South East of England.
  • Introduced a new, larger welfare mobile pod unique to the group.
  • Launched an innovative LED tower light as a new product line.
  • Unified the business units onto a single IT platform.
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