Clearwater International Ireland advises on the cross-border merger of KN Group with Circet

Clearwater International Ireland has advised KN Group (KN) and the shareholders, on the merger of the company with French-based Circet Group (Circet).

The combination of the two businesses will create a diversified player in European telecom services, offering full turnkey solutions across all network technologies in France, the UK, Ireland, Germany, Morocco and the Caribbean. It is anticipated that the company will generate sales in excess of €1.1bn in 2018.

KN, led by CEO Donagh Kelly, is a €350m turnover specialist utilities services provider ( The company employs more than 2,500 people and provides services to clients including Eir, Vodafone, Sky, Virgin, BT, ESB and the London Underground. Established in 1975 it has built an ever-growing portfolio of specialist utilities services across telecoms, transport infrastructure, power and multimedia installation. In the last 15 years the Group has achieved staggering growth in both the UK, Ireland and international markets including Africa, India and the Caribbean.

Circet is the number one provider of telecom infrastructure services in France, with annual revenues approaching €800m. Circet provides engineering, deployment, installation and maintenance services to telecom operators, covering both mobile and fixed technologies. Based in the south of France, Circet operates a network of 75 local branches, employing over 3,000 staff and works with over 2,000 subcontractors. Circet’s customer base includes all of the major players within the French telecoms industry, including all of the French national telecommunications operators, local authorities and specialist rural deployment players, equipment manufacturers, tower companies, utility companies and the French government.

Circet was acquired in April 2018 by leading global private equity firm, Advent International (Advent). With offices in 12 countries across the North America, Europe, Latin America and Asia, Advent is uniquely positioned to support businesses in driving forward their development plans, either domestically or internationally, organically or through add-on acquisitions. Advent has a strong experience in investing in the telecom sector, both into telecom operators themselves as well as telecom service providers.

The merger of KN with Circet represents the fourth deal completion by the Clearwater International Ireland team within the past two months, following the sale of Brightwater Recruitment, BHP Community (Insurance) and the management buyout of H&MV Engineering.