Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

Balmoral sells ACE Winches back to founder Alfie Cheyne after court bust-up

ACE Winches Balmoral
Alfie Cheyne, founder of Ace Winches (left) and Jim Milne, chairman and managing director of Balmoral Group, announcing their partnership in 2017.

Balmoral Group has sold ACE Winches back to founder and former chief executive Alfie Cheyne after the relationship between the two north-east businesses soured.

Engineering group Balmoral built a majority 70% stake in the Aberdeenshire deck machinery specialist from 2017-2019, but relations have gone south amid a recent court bust-up.

Balmoral said the Cheyne family has today exercised an option, in line with its original agreement, allowing it to buy ACE back.

Earlier this year, Mr Cheyne and his wife Valerie accused Balmoral of abusing its position as controlling shareholder and of mounting a campaign to “marginalise” them and force the sale of their remaining 30% stake at below market value.

Balmoral denied the allegations as “unduly suspicious and conspiratorial”, however a judge turned down a request to dismiss an “unfair prejudice” petition from the Cheynes.

Mr Cheyne launched Alfred Cheyne Engineering in 1992, rebranding the company as Ace Winches 14 years later.

He was named chief executive of the Year in the 2013 Scottish Business Awards.

But the downturn which struck in 2014 strained ACE’s balance sheet.

In 2017, Balmoral received a minority stake in Ace in exchange for an initial investment, before making a fresh cash injection and becoming majority shareholder in late 2019.

Balmoral announced major changes to ACE’s top order in January 2020 following a strategic review.

Mr Cheyne’s chief executive position was filled by former chief operating officer, George Fisher, and the husband and wife team were moved to non-executive roles.

Mr Milne told the Cheynes he wanted to buy their 30% shareholding in June 2020.

But the Cheynes’ wished to regain control of Ace by exercising an option to buy Balmoral’s shares.

They raised the petition with the court and Lord Tyre granted a number of interim interdicts in July.

The new deal marks an end to the court dispute between the firms.

Jim Milne, chairman and managing director of Balmoral Group, said: We have enjoyed working with the management and staff of ACE Winches and wish them all the best for the future.”

Alfie Cheyne added: “Balmoral has been incredibly supportive to ACE Winches over the last few years and has positioned the business well for continued growth.

“I look forward to an exciting new chapter ahead in the development of the business.”

Recommended for you

More from Energy Voice

Latest Posts