Gateley boosts property practice by buying firm of surveyors

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19 September 2016

Ward: new opportunities

Ward: new opportunities

Listed law firm Gateley has continued its acquisition of complementary businesses by spending up to £2m to buy a firm of surveyors that will work alongside its property practice.

It has bought Birmingham-based Hamer Associates – to be renamed Gateley Hamer – which specialises in easements and wayleaves, and compulsory purchase and compensation.

It follows the deal to buy tax incentives advisory business Capitus in the spring.

Gateley will pay £1m up front – in a combination of cash and shares – with up to another £1m depending on the Hamer’s financial performance in the two years following completion. Under the terms of the deal, the overall price paid cannot exceed £2.05m.

In the year ended 31 March 2016, Hamer Associates generated revenues of £1.2m and operating profit of £292,000. Gateley said it expected the acquisition to be “immediately earnings enhancing”.

Hamer Associates’ easements and wayleaves team advises property developers on negotiations in relation to the removal of utility infrastructure (pylons, cables, pipes etc) from development sites, and negotiates compensation for loss of development value where that infrastructure remains in-situ.

The compulsory purchase and compensation team advises project promoters on all aspects of compulsory purchase, from initial consultation through to settlement of claims; facilitating housing, regeneration, infrastructure and energy projects. The team also represents landowners and businesses affected by compulsory purchase as a result of projects such as High Speed 2, Crossrail and the Thames Tideway Tunnel.

In a statement to the stock market, Gateley said: “The acquisition of Hamer Associates is consistent with Gateley’s IPO growth strategy to acquire businesses offering complementary professional and other specialist services across Gateley’s five business groups, including property.

“In completing this transaction Gateley will add, alongside Gateley Capitus, a second specialist property business whose focus is to unlock latent value in its clients’ property assets. The acquisition will further enhance Gateley’s ability to support its property clients, offering them not only a first-rate legal service, but also a suite of specialist commercial property services.

“The business will sit alongside Gateley’s national property business, which itself acts for an array of developers, including 17 of the UK’s top 20 house builders.”

Gateley CEO Michael Ward said: “Hamer’s first-class reputation and acknowledged expertise has generated an impressive list of both private and public-sector clients and we are excited about the new opportunities the acquisition brings to both Hamer and the wider Gateley group.”

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