THE Nevis Capital investment business founded by generator tycoons John and James Pirrie has said it did not complete any deals in the latest year, noting the unrealistic price expectations of some vendors caused complications in the market.

However, Glasgow-based Nevis made clear it was in the market for deals in spite of the uncertainty around Brexit.

Nevis Capital partner Brian Aitken said the investment firm is taking a long term view and accepts that uncertainty is something that businesses just need to live with.

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In a review of the year, Nevis said it wanted to invest in profitable businesses that it could help to achieve sustainable long-term success.

“We’re still seeing lots of opportunities (more than 120 in 2019) but we set ourselves a high bar and we know there is great value in declining the wrong ones,” said Nevis in the review. “This year, we’ve also seen a trend for deals not completing due to unrealistic Seller price expectations. This is a trend that seems to have been reasonably widespread.”

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“Sometimes our time and investment will be best spent on the current portfolio and other times on new deals,” added Nevis.

It said 2019 had been a very good year for all the companies that it had backed.

The total turnover, operating profit and employee numbers of the firms in the portfolio have more than doubled since Nevis invested in them.

The firm’s portfolio includes generator business DTGen, pipework specialist James Ramsay and Merkland Tank, all of which are based In Glasgow. It also includes Cumbria’s Astec Precision.

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DTGen was formerly known as Dieselec Thistle. The stand by power specialist achieved record turnover of £16.4m in the year to June 30, up 15 per cent on the preceding period.

The Pirries founded Nevis in 2007 using proceeds of the £62 million sale of the LCH Generators business they developed to Speedy Hire. Mr Aitken was a deal-maker at PwC before becoming a founding partner in Nevis.