The break-up of what was once one of Britain’s biggest outsourcers will near its conclusion this week when the former jewel in Interserve’s crown is sold to a French industrial group.
Sky News has learnt that Altrad Group has agreed to buy RMD Kwikform, Interserve’s global equipment services arm, in a deal that is expected to be announced on Thursday morning.
City sources said the purchase would cost Altrad more than £140m.
RMD Kwikform has been involved in various stages of construction at HS2, Crossrail, Battersea Power Station and the new nuclear power station at Hinkley Point.
The division employs more than 1,300 people, and is chaired by Ken Hanna, a prominent figure in blue-chip British boardrooms.
Mr Hanna was recruited with the objective of securing an orderly sale of the business, and is expected to stay on the group board until the end of the year to oversee a number of formalities.
A number of other suitors, including private equity firms, also tabled offers for RMD Kwikform.
The sale process marked the second occasion in five years that Interserve had examined a sale of the unit.
In 2016, it opted not to offload it as the broader Interserve group began to run into financial difficulty which ultimately led to its brief collapse into administration.
The company emerged from an insolvency process under the control of funds including Angelo Gordon, Cerberus Capital Management and Davidson Kempner Capital Management.
At its peak, Interserve employed more than 45,000 people in the UK.
Its vast support services arm, which accounted for the bulk of its workforce, was subsequently sold to rival Mitie, while its healthcare arm was sold to City & County Healthcare.
The disposal of RMD Kwikform leaves Interserve’s construction division, now known as Tilbury Douglas, as the only major part of the business still under the group’s name.
A spokesman for RMD Kwikform declined to comment on Wednesday.