We are pleased to announce that we have effected the sale of IRT Surveys to Mears Group PLC, the leading provider of services to the Housing sector in the UK.  IRT is an investment in Shackleton’s third fund, SS3 LP and Shackleton’s representative Deborah Hudson has played an active role in the development and ultimate exit of the business.

Headquartered in Dundee, IRT provides a range of data-led services focussed at driving energy efficiency, decarbonisation, and broader asset management activities. IRT has developed over several years a proprietary technology platform (‘DReam’), which aims to simplify and accelerate the retrofit journey, by assessing energy performance of housing portfolios, optimise budgets and provide recommendations on the most efficient way to complete fit outs, with a focus on the affordable housing sector.

Mears acquired IRT because it opens significant opportunities in the structurally growing field of carbon reduction.  IRT’s offering will be complementary and additive to the services already provided by Mears. The requirement to decarbonise an ageing housing stock, especially in affordable housing, is accelerating in the current environment given the significant increases in energy costs, and the agenda to meet the Government’s targets of achieving net zero by 2050.

IRT is well-known in the sector, and has been recognised with a number of awards.  It has over 30 Registered Provider clients spanning the UK and has surveyed over 350,000 domestic properties. IRT will continue to service existing IRT clients.

Having the innovative IRT platform is a vital part of the Mears’s retrofit solution and will enable Mears to conduct stock analysis modelling for carbon reduction work, enabling opportunities to be progressed quickly, and to help identify and access grant funding support available. The Acquisition will provide Mears new skills and capabilities in this area, bringing new expertise in-house, supporting pre-sales activity and helping to unlock the Group’s ability to deliver carbon retrofit work, which is identified to be a significant market.

IRT’s sister venture HEERO Technologies will remain in the Shackleton portfolio.  Shackleton helped form HEERO earlier this year to focus on supporting owner-occupiers. HEERO offers home owners a pathway to assess home energy efficiency improvement measures, to identify how best to fund them, and introduces qualified and trusted installers.

Commenting on the acquisition of IRT, David Miles, Chief Executive Officer of Mears, said:

“I am delighted to have completed the acquisition of IRT. This is our first acquisition since 2018, as we look at ways of providing greater scale to Mears, drive our ESG agenda, and provide a broader range of services to new and existing clients.  This deal is completely aligned with our strategy, utilising innovation and technology to drive positive change in the sphere of carbon reduction. We are excited to welcome IRT and its employees into the Group.”

Stewart Little, CEO of IRT, is delighted with the transaction:

“This transaction represents a really important stage in the development of our business.  Getting here has not always been plain sailing, but in recent years we’ve been really grateful to Deborah and the Shackleton team for their steadfast and practical support as we focused on becoming a high quality software business.”