Berkshire: Strategic acquisition fuels Lo-Q’s ambitions

A progressive outlook has been key to Lo-Q’s success in the dynamic leisure and entertainment sector. Now, with the support of a $7.5 million finance package from Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking, the company has seized an opportunity to accelerate its global growth journey. 

Berkshire-based Lo-Q was founded by Leonard Sim following a trip to a Florida theme park, and its success mirrors the great British tradition of innovation and entrepreneurialism. Frustrated by the queuing times he experienced in Florida, Sim pioneered a dynamic virtual queuing concept that has become the cornerstone of a highly-progressive company with active subsidiaries in the US and Canada. Its systems are currently deployed in more than 35 of the world’s largest theme parks and water parks.

Lo-Q recently acquired accesso, a leading US ticketing and e-commerce business. The acquisition has created a platform for even greater growth and presented a significant strategic opportunity for Lo-Q.

“The acquisition undoubtedly represents a key stage in our global development, offering an opportunity to leverage our global standing,” said Lo-Q finance director John Alder.

Lo-Q opted to explore acquisition finance as a means to support an efficient capital structure and maximise shareholder value.

“Lloyds Bank expressed immediate interest and put a strong team in place to deliver competitive indicative and credit-backed proposals that supported our transaction timetable,” said Alder. “They were very accommodating in offering a US dollar denominated facility. As the majority of our business is in North America we have a surplus dollar exposure, and this provides a natural hedge.”

As winner of a Queens Award for International Trade in 2011, Lo-Q builds on strong foundations with its growth ambitions, and continues to look to new markets and M&A opportunities, backed by an evolving product offering and a strong relationship with Lloyds Bank.

“It’s an interesting time for Lo-Q,” Alder added. “We’re delighted to be working with a bank supporting a British technology company delivering global solutions to the leisure and entertainment sector. We look forward to developing a long-term relationship with Lloyds Bank as we continue the Lo-Q success story.”

Lo-Q CEO Tom Burnet concluded: “From the first meeting I’ve been delighted with the high levels of proactivity, pragmatism and enthusiasm we’ve seen from the Lloyds Bank team.”

“Lo-Q is a rising star in an exciting sector,” said David Squire, relationship director, Thames Valley, Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking. “We’re very pleased to support them as their sole UK bank as they continue on an impressive international growth journey.”