Mid-market private equity investor LDC has backed the management buyout of Martin Audio, a designer and manufacturer of premium loudspeaker systems, from global audio specialist Loud Audio.

As part of the deal, LDC – which is the private equity arm of Lloyds Banking Group – has invested £12m for a significant stake in the company. The investment will enable the business to further develop its product range, and improve its sales and marketing capabilities through the extension of its global distribution network.

Martin Audio was founded in the 1970s by sound engineer Dave Martin, and now employs more than 60 people with a turnover of around £20m. They have been enjoying a period of growth following their success in the touring market, with the British Summer Time Festival at Hyde Park (pictured above) and Rock in Rio, a popular annual festival in Brazil.

The global market for high-performance loudspeakers is estimated to be worth £1.1bn per annum, driven by demand around the world for live music and entertainment, as well as the increasing number of venues worldwide that require high-performance systems.

Dom Harter, managing director of Martin Audio, said: “Our success to date has been underpinned by providing equipment of the utmost quality to help deliver an unforgettable listening experience to people across the globe. Being a trusted brand and operating in a growing market means the time is right for us to fast-track the growth of the business.

“The next phase of our journey needs a growth-focused investment partner like LDC and the team has demonstrated a shared vision for the business from the outset. Our focus is now on developing our product line even further, and ensuring we have a rock-solid foundation to accelerate its expansion.”