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Whilst most firms batten down the hatches to ride out the current property downturn, smart businesses will be assessing the opportunities for mergers and acquisitions, says Clearwater Corporate Finance.
The firm says the crisis in the markets offers companies the chance to acquire property businesses at realistic values or to consolidate and strengthen their position.
Phil Burns, a partner with Clearwater, says: “No-one knows precisely when the market will turn but when it does, those firms that have consolidated their positions through creative dealmaking rather than hiding their heads in the sand will be the ones who make the most from the upturn.”
Burns points to two recent events which highlight the current trends. Financial conglomerate Dawnay Day, which has stakes in a huge range of property assets including retail chain Austin Reed, pubs, restaurants and hotels, has become the latest victim of the credit crunch. It is the biggest single property-related insolvency in the UK since the beginning of the downturn and could lead to the sell-off of many of its assets.
Meanwhile two of the country’s leading estate agents have announced they are planning to merge to create a group with a revenue of around £35 million. Carter Jonas, which is based in London’s Mayfair, has 19 offices while Dreweatt Neate specialises in rural areas and has 18 offices throughout the South.
Burns adds: “The downturn offers companies the chance to pursue a growth strategy at more realistic prices than when values were at their peak. Now is also a good time to consolidate so that when things do improve, you can emerge stronger and better placed to take advantage.
“Appointing a corporate finance adviser who knows the market will allow you to assess the options and ensure that you are aware of opportunities as and when they arise.”
Notes to Editors
Clearwater Corporate Finance is the leading independent corporate finance house in the UK with an exceptional track record of over 300 completed transactions. We advise on all aspects of corporate finance transactions from mergers and acquisitions (M&As) and company sales to management buy-outs (MBOs). Our clients include management teams, owner-managers, private equity firms and large corporates. We differentiate our service through our:
Independence – as we are not linked to any larger financial institution or consulting firm, we can provide objective advice without any potential conflict of interest.
Cross-border capability - the close communication between our four UK offices and the 60 member firms in IMAP, our exclusive partnership of international M&A firms, makes us a natural choice for cross-border transactions.
Sector expertise - our global sector teams offer clients a unique insight into M&A opportunities across the world.
Research and origination - with 25 per cent of staff focussed on these activities, we offer a market-leading capability to identify strategic opportunities for clients.
Excellence - we are committed to excellence in our service delivery and each client project is managed in a bespoke manner.
Commitment - as an owner-managed, partner-led firm, we guarantee a high level of partner involvement. We take a long-term view to build trust and lasting relationships.
The size of our team and the deals we advise on make us the most active independent corporate finance house in the markets in which we operate.
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Dabbs PR & Marketing
T: 01939 210503 or 07711 672893
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