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Belfast medical dummy firm is bought by its directors with private equity

By Margaret Canning

Published 25/10/2016

Michael Calo, Stephen McClelland, Mike Irvine and Ryan Colhoun celebrate the acquisition of TruCorp, which was formed in 2002
Michael Calo, Stephen McClelland, Mike Irvine and Ryan Colhoun celebrate the acquisition of TruCorp, which was formed in 2002

A Belfast company which makes dummies for medical training has been sold to existing management backed by a private equity business for an undisclosed sum.

TruCorp, which was first set up by Queen's University in 2002, has been sold to Cordovan Capital Partners and its own management team of Michael Calo and Ryan Colhoun.

It's a major provider of anatomically-correct manikins for use in resuscitation, airway management and anaesthesia practice.

Mr Calo, TruCorp's sales and marketing director, said: "Ryan and I both feel it is the perfect time for us to be taking ownership of Trucorp alongside Cordovan Capital Partners.

"Our products and service have always been world-class and we intend to build upon that legacy focusing on new product development and further penetration of new and existing markets."

And the pair thanked their former backers in the business. "Ryan and I would like to thank the former shareholders for the huge contribution they have made to the company and for the years of mentoring they have given us.

"Specifically, Colin Foster, our former chairman and managing director, has personally taught us a substantial amount about running a successful business."

Mike Irvine of Cordovan Capital Partners said it was delighted to get involved with the company.

"This is an excellent company with plenty of potential for growth not only in its existing markets but also through a pipeline of new products.

"Credit has to go to the former shareholders of TruCorp who have built a terrific business. It is great that they have been able to realise the value they have created and that the management team has the opportunity to take the company forward."

Cordovan Capital Partners' members includes former Schrader chief executive Stephen McClelland - who now joins TruCorp as chairman.

Bank of Ireland funded the deal through a senior debt facility.

Mike Irvine of Cordovan is also well-known in the business community after setting up Davy Stockbrokers in Northern Ireland.

And he is joined in associate company Arkios Cordovan by Neil Adair, who set up the operations of Anglo Irish Bank in Northern Ireland, and later became a director of property company PBN with Paddy Kearney and Brian McConville.

Cordovan Capital Partners' deal to take over TruCorp is the first major disposal of a Northern Ireland medical devices company since last year, when defibrillator manufacturer HeartSine Technologies in Belfast was sold to Physio-Control for an undisclosed sum.

HeartSine is also a former Queen's spin-out company.

Belfast Telegraph

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