Family-owned Kids Planet has received a further £6.5m investment from BGF as it plans to double the number of nurseries within the group in the next five years.
Since BGF’s initial investment, the Greater Manchester-headquartered business has expanded from 17 to 23 sites across the North of England, including most recently in Preston, Stockport, Billinge and Swinton. Last year, it was awarded the top spot in the Nursery World Childcare League Table – a compilation of Ofsted ratings for the 20 largest nursery groups in Britain.
Kids Planet has a number of new sites already in the pipeline, including developments in Great Sankey, Hoylake, Manchester city centre and EllenBrook. The new sites will follow the current Kids Planet model of early-years care based around creative play, nutritional meals and educational support.
The group provides nursery care and education to around 3,000 children and currently holds 14 Ofsted Outstanding ratings – their last 17 inspections have all been awarded this rating, and the remainder of settings awaiting assessment. Since opening its first two nurseries in Warrington and Widnes, the Kids Planet has grown organically and through the acquisition of several nurseries – including Jeffrey’s Corner, Liverpool Nurseries and Yarrow House Nurseries – to become one of largest groups in the region. BGF initially invested £10m into Kids Planet in 2016 to support acquisitions and nursery fit-outs.
Clare Roberts, Kids Planet CEO said: “BGF’s support has been crucial in helping us roll-out more sites as we continue to grow. Our ambition is to continue to expand and increase the provision of exceptional early-years care across the North of England.”
Pinesh Mehta, BGF said: “John, Clare and the team are growing the business at an impressive rate, while maintaining an absolute focus on quality care and well invested facilities. BGF’s follow-on funding into Kids Planet is based on consistently strong performance, and we’re very pleased to be supporting the business as it continues its expansion.”