Leading architect practice Corstorphine + Wright secure investment from Beechbrook Capital to fund expansive acquisition strategy.
Corstorphine + Wright has grown rapidly in the last few years through a combination of organic and acquisitive growth. It is now ranked as the 41st largest practice in the UK with ambitions to grow further. To secure a shareholder restructuring and additional firepower for acquisitions Smith Cooper Corporate Finance (SCCF) and Gateley Legal were appointed to support management with implementing their strategy. SCCF advised the company, and its shareholders, on how to prepare for investment and construct a shareholder realignment that would create the platform for future growth and consolidation of the UK’s architectural market.
SCCF’s deal team provided corporate structuring advice and advised the senior management team on how Private Equity could bolster the company’s future growth. The team ensured Corstorphine + Wright were in an optimal position for investment and then marketed the business to its private database of preferred PE investors.
Following a competitive auction process, funding was secured from Beechbrook Capital, a specialist fund that can provide a blend of debt and equity investment to high profile businesses.
Gateley Legal provided advice on the transaction including diligence support. Andrew Cowan, partner at Gateley Legal, said “Corstorphine + Wright has been a long-standing client and has demonstrated year on year growth – above 30% per annum. Its rise to becoming one of the top architect practices in the UK has been swift and well deserved. Beechbrook will provide them with the firepower to continue growing.”
Paul Turner, Director of Corstorphine + Wright comments “Beechbrook has been an exemplary partner to deal with since our first introductory meeting through to completion. They share our vision and appetite for growth and will enable us to fulfil our objectives in the coming years. We have an exciting few years ahead of us.”
Darren Hodson, Corporate Finance Partner at Smith Cooper comments “I have worked with Corstorphine + Wright over a number of years and the management team has driven the business forward through technical enhancements and strategically positioning itself in most UK sectors. This has resulted in significant market share gains. The Company has many strategic options in front of it with plenty of opportunities to expand in the UK or to potentially develop an international presence. Given the funding it has received, I expect the firm will make some high-profile acquisitions in the future.”
Paul Turner, Director of Corstorphine + Wright commented further:
“Smith Cooper Corporate Finance provided us with exceptional professional service. I was particularly impressed with the attention to detail and the 24/7 access to the team we required. Their proactive advice surrounding the complexities of our deal was second-to-none. We wouldn’t have been able to achieve this deal without their help and we would recommend them to other entrepreneurs.”
Paul further stated that: “I’ve been very impressed with the team at Gateley Legal who provided us with clear and straightforward legal advice throughout the whole deal process. They provided an exemplary level of service and quickly found the right answers to the problems we faced. They are one of the best legal teams we work with and I wouldn’t hesitate in recommending them to anyone else.”
Corporate Tax advice was provided by Smith Cooper, Haines Watts and Claritas, whilst Gateley Legal provided legal advice to the Company and shareholders. Beechbrook received legal advice from Pinsents. Mazars provided financial Due Diligence.
Advisor: Darren Hodson
Date: September 2019