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Welcoming new nurseries to Thrive Childcare and Education.
Home / About / About / Growth and Acquisitions
Selling a children’s nursery business to the right buyer does not have to be a daunting prospect. As a leading childcare and education provider, our goal is to continue the great work that we have been doing throughout Scotland and England with an aim to developing our brand’s reach. We intend to further our passion for childcare, our ethos and our provision of safe, nurturing and happy environments by acquiring new sites across the country. If you are interested in selling your nursery business, then please consider our reputation as a trusted business that is keen to spread its ethos to all of our sites but also to maintain the unique spirit of the individual nurseries we acquire.
We genuinely believe that childhood is a treasured time and high-quality Early Years care and education can shape every child’s life in a positive way. Therefore, it is our responsibility to provide environments and experiences that capture the joys of childhood, nurture each child’s individual growth and development, and pave the way for success in school and life.
Thrive Childcare and Education are constantly welcoming new acquisitions to our portfolio. In February of this year, we added the outstanding Village Group Nurseries to the Thrive family. Our most recent acquisition in May of this year, is the lovely Homestead Nursery in Frodsham, Cheshire.
We offer a unique, early education experience built on 20 years of expertise and understanding of working families and their needs. Childcare and early education isn’t just what we do – it’s who we are. Our growth ambitions are fuelled by our desire to provide Early Years care to as many children as possible and our mission is to be recognised as a local provider of choice, on a national scale.
Our existing network of sites means we offer families access to our nursery settings across Scotland and the North of England. We are currently Scotland’s largest nursery group and we are looking to expand our existing portfolio of sites across the North of England, by acquiring high-quality nursery settings aligned to our brand and our values.
So, what are we looking for?
Single or multi-site group providers
Good locations across:-
Freehold or leasehold opportunities
Spacious outdoor area/grounds
Nurseries operating with 60+ full-time places (or with expansion opportunities)
Strong nursery leadership and team
Car parking and/or space for child drop off and collection
Check out our News page for information about recently acquired nurseries!
If you are looking for guidance on selling your children’s nursery business or wish to have a conversation to explore the process and would like to speak with an experienced member of our acquisitions team, please fill out the form below.
Any communication with our team will be kept strictly confidential.
We look forward to hearing from you!
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When we made the difficult decision to sell our nursery, we felt that a group would be the best option to take Poplars on the next stage of its journey. However, we did have concerns, as we wanted the nursery to keep its individuality.
Thrive share the same values and ethos but also respect the fact that all nurseries are different, as are the communities that they are based in. They are therefore committed to Poplars retaining it’s identity.
The process of the sale and the due diligence was of course, a stressful time but the Thrive team really pushed to get the sale completed in the timescale that we had requested. We didn’t make much contact during this time as it is of course, a legal process and we wanted to keep a line between this and any personal connection. We were aware, however, that the Thrive team was available for any support if we needed it.
Following the completion it has been lovely to meet more of the Thrive team during the handover. It has also been very reassuring that Thrive are so supportive of the nursery Manager and her team whilst they continue to provide the high standards of care and education that Poplars is known for.
We truly wish Thrive every success for the future as their group expands but they continue to recognise the uniqueness of individual settings
The decision to sell your business requires some soul searching and courage to take the first step, but in my opinion, you know when the time is right. After 32 years of building a nursery of some repute and quality, the time came to sell. The approach from Thrive was understanding, calm and supportive. They listened to my fears on change for staff and parents, alongside the desire from me to keep the ethos and quality I had built over years. They assured me that they valued individual businesses and their unique quality. They were true to their promise.
Change is never easy, and the process of selling is lengthy and time consuming. However Thrive did not pressurise and went at a pace I was comfortable with. Aftercare of staff and parents was carefully thought out, including individual meetings with Area Managers, HR and Finance personnel from Thrive, all conducted before the completion date. As a company they were totally confidential and supportive during the process of the sale.
The final day was one of mixed emotion, but I was emotionally supported as were my staff on the day of exchange. Thrive executed a carefully planned handover for both staff and parents, alongside providing quality support in the setting for a considerable period of time. They appear to recognise every setting is different and have continued to allow the nursery to be unique, alongside maintaining the quality of the nursery and holiday club I was proud to have developed.
As our group has grown, we have retained the individual names and character of the nurseries because they are very much part of the communities they serve. When we were talking vision and values with Thrive, it was clear they shared this commitment to ensuring each nursery meets the needs of its local community.
We were blown away when we took the nurseries on. I had found my passion and wanted to lead by example, so I studied for an Early Years degree in Manchester, followed by a Masters Degree in Birmingham, which Emma Jones, our Operations Director, and I managed to achieve together. I realised continuous learning was essential.
As the group has grown, taking it forward requires so much more energy and investment –in time and money. After 17 years, with our three children growing up, we want some time for ourselves, without talking about nurseries, and valued time to spend with our family.
I really love the people we have worked with. We have nurtured and mentored the management team so they could deliver what the nursery teams needed to support and have a positive impact on the children.
Going into the nurseries and seeing the happy faces of the children and the staff being so inspired and enthusiastic to share their learning journey has been a joy.
The teams have shown great resilience during the turbulence of Covid-19, they were there to support every family and child and help the nurseries to bounce back and become stronger. I know they will continue to thrive.
Making the difficult decision to retire wasn’t an easy one. After having the setting for 31 years I needed the it to go to established operators who would nurture it as much as I had. When I first met representatives from Thrive, I was very impressed. They held the same values as me wanting to provide the highest quality childcare with a strong emphasis on learning outdoors. The nursery manager and I have worked long and hard to build a setting with an excellent reputation in the local community. In fact we look after children of some of the children that attended in our earlier years.
Right from the get go, Thrive have supported the process with regular contact throughout the due diligence process. The process I have to say is not easy, and can be stressful at times but understandably necessary. During the process I met with various people from the group, all were very approachable and nothing too much trouble.
Now the process is complete, I feel happy that Thrive will continue to provide excellent childcare and education as they have the same ethos as I did. They will support the staff in their future growth and lead the setting into the next phase of its development…… Thank you Thrive.
We are fortunate to have a full Senior Leadership team of experts in a wide range of fields. Our team has probably come across any challenges or issues that you might be facing, so we are well placed to help you navigate any issues that might crop up during any potential process.
We are happy to help you with each step of the process if desired. Our team includes experienced transactors and education and childcare sector experts who are happy to act as a sounding board and give you an honest view regarding any challenges that you might be facing ahead of any potential transaction process. We are more than happy to help and support where we can.
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