Fairpoint Group plc, one of the UK’s leading providers of consumer professional services, has expanded their business and legal services stature with the announcement it has reached an agreement to acquire Colemans -CTTS LLP for an initial consideration of £9 million.
The group announced on Monday that it has reached an agreement to acquire the trade and assets of Colemans-CTTS LLP, CT Support Services Ltd and the entire ordinary share capital of Holiday TravelWatch Ltd. Fairpoint will fund the acquisition through use of its current financing facilities and net cash balances.
Colemans-CCTS LLP is a provider of consumer legal services, including particular expertise in volume conveyancing. Colemans have previously won Conveyancing Firm of the Year for London and the South East and it will be interesting to see what the acquisition will mean for their reputable conveyancing department.
The move comes after Fairpoint Group expanded their business in 2014 through the purchase of Simpson Millar, in a deal worth £15 million. Fairpoint Group records that Simpson Millar LLP has performed well compared to its prior year, when it was not part of the firm, and is now its largest single source of income.
Clients will hope that Colemans’ volume capabilities will now be complemented by the range of services already offered by existing businesses within the group, such as Simpson Millar. The potential of combined service lines across the now linked firms should provide the opportunity for continued development of strong customer service values, processing capability and increasing market-leading positions in sectors such as conveyancing.
Colemans was established in 1984 and has over 200 employees (of which 67 are fee earners) based in three offices in Manchester, Kingston and Acton. Legal completion of the acquisition is expected to take place on 14th August, following completion of the Colemans’ employee consultation process.
Colemans will be integrated within Fairpoint’s consumer legal services segment, with Colemans’ existing senior team taking management roles within the enlarged legal services business unit.
The acquisition is expected to result in consumer legal services making up 62% of Fairpoint’s total revenue. The acquisition seems to suggest a long term intent by Fairpoint Group to increase their holding over the legal services sector, and there could be other legal services acquisitions by the company in the future.
Of the purchase Chris Moat, Chief Executive Officer of Fairpoint Group, said:
“The acquisition of Colemans is an important step in the development of the Group’s fast growing legal services platform. It brings particular class leading expertise in the areas of volume personal injury, conveyancing and travel services and gives strong impetus to our agenda of reshaping the Group towards a broader professional services organisation. The acquisition is expected to be earnings enhancing on an adjusted basis and will raise the consumer legal services segment to 62% of Group revenues on a pro forma basis. We are delighted to welcome our new colleagues to the Group.”
Janet Tilley, Managing Partner of Colemans said:
“We share Fairpoint’s vision of a rapidly evolving consumer legal services market and are pleased that this has presented the opportunity for Colemans to become part of a larger and dynamic Group, leading the transformation of this industry segment. We expect to take advantage of being part of a larger platform with a strong focus on process. We are delighted to become part of the Fairpoint Group.”