Oakley to buy Steer Automotive Group from Keyhaven, Chiltern Capital

Steer Automotive Group is a UK-based independent collision repair group.

  • Steer’s founder Richard Steer and the management team to reinvest alongside Oakley
  • Chiltern Capital and Keyhaven Capital originally invested in Steer in 2021
  • Oakley is a private equity firm with offices in London, Milan, Munich and Luxembourg

Oakley Capital has reached a conditional agreement to invest in Steer Automotive Group, a UK-based independent collision repair group.

Oakley will acquire the shares held by Keyhaven Capital Partners and Chiltern Capital as part of the transaction.

Steer has expanded through 18 acquisitions, establishing a network of over 100 repair centres. It is a partner for the UK’s vehicle insurers, accident management companies and OEM dealerships, holding 43 manufacturer accreditations, including recommendation and approval for major brands such as Porsche, Rolls-Royce, Bentley, McLaren, Lamborghini, Aston Martin, JLR, Tesla, Mercedes Benz, Volkswagen Group, Stellantis and Ford.

Richard Steer, founder at Steer, and the current management team will continue to lead the business and are reinvesting alongside Oakley.

Oakley’s investment will facilitate Steer’s next stage of growth within the fragmented collision repair market, strengthening its investment in its facilities, development and training through the Steer Academy programme, and EV repair capability to meet the demands of newer, more technologically advanced vehicles, according to a release.

Chiltern Capital and Keyhaven Capital originally invested in Steer in 2021.

During their three-year investment period, Steer moved from a top 20 regional B2B collision repair business to a UK-leading position, the release said. Steer has invested in its operational infrastructure and management team which improved its operational efficiency, while also introducing data and analytics tools to enhance KPI monitoring as well as rolling out a programme of ESG initiatives, the release added.

Oakley is a private equity firm with offices in London, Milan, Munich and Luxembourg.

London-based Keyhaven is a secondaries private equity firm investing in lower mid-market businesses across Europe.

Chiltern is a private equity investor based in London.

Oakley was advised by Houlihan Lokey, Simpson, Thacher & Bartlett, Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison, PwC, LEK, KPMG and Ramboll. Keyhaven and Chiltern were advised by DC Advisory, DLA Piper, PwC, OC&C, HCR Law, AJ Gallaghers, Sustainable Advantage and Macfarlanes.

No financial details of the transaction were disclosed.