NuGen Properties

Octavius acquires rail consultant


Navitas managing director Louis Nel

London-based Navitas provides electrical engineering consultancy services to the railways.

Its team of 30 provides services ranging from technical specifications and feasibility studies, through to outline and detailed design, as well as engineering support during scheme implementation, operation, and maintenance. The group includes Navitas Engineering and Permarail, an electromagnetic compatibility specialist that it acquired in 2019.

Navitas will continue to trade under its own name and will remain as a separate Limited company under the new ownership. Louis Nel, who formed the business 12 years ago, will continue to lead it.

Octavius Infrastructure was previously Osborne Infrastructure. Geoffrey Osborne Ltd sold its highways and railways division to  private equity investor Sullivan Street Partners in September 2021 and the Octavius brand was born in April 2022. In July 2023 it acquired Southampton-based R&W Civil Engineering.

Octavius chief executive John Dowsett said of the Navitas acquisition: “I am delighted we are welcoming the proven Navitas team into the Octavius family. This deal represents another important milestone for Octavius in adding more specialist capability. We are continuing to grow our presence in rail electrification following our recent appointment as Electrification & Plant partner in the Southern Renewals Enterprise with Network Rail in CP7 and CP8. The acquisition also serves our commitment to supporting the decarbonisation agenda.

“Completing this purchase so closely after our recent acquisition of R&W Civil Engineering is a testament to the support we have from Sullivan Street Partners in reinvesting into our long term business strategy that is focused on ambitious, but sustainable growth.”

Navitas Engineering director Louis Nel added: “Navitas Engineering and Permarail already enjoy a strong and collaborative working relationship with Octavius. This natural and exciting next step will allow us to build on what we have achieved to date with the support and backing of Octavius.”

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