QUAYLE Munro Project Finance is searching for a new name and smaller offices as it asserts its independence from its parent company.
The firm, formed as a result of a buyout by four former directors of Quayle Munro, is 30 per cent owned by the merchant bank, after it decided to quit Edinburgh and shift its headquarters to London.
Stephen Bell, one of the founders of QMPF, expects the company will buy out the corporate advisers’ stake in the next year.
Under the deal, the Scottish directors of QMPF have the option to buy out the parent company’s share with an additional 20 per cent return on capital. In return, Quayle Munro provided the team with £375,000 in working capital and a £375,000 loan.
Bell said QMPF would continue its focus on project finance, which includes work it has done with Scottish Futures Trust, which commissions work on schools and community infrastructure “hubs”.
QMPF also advises universities and colleges across the UK on debt and asset allocation, and it will look to expand its work advising on renewables projects.
The firm is also keen to work with the Green Investment Bank (GIB) when it launches in November.
Bell said: “They have got about £3 billion of capital. Now, £3bn in project terms is actually not huge. But it must be a good thing for Edinburgh and project investment. It will be a good thing for us in terms of working alongside them.”
Bell said the name change and move to new offices would happen in the next year, adding that the company’s new moniker will be something that is less Scottish.
He said: “The name has good recognition. Although people can’t generally spell it in England, which doesn’t help. If you are in London, ‘Munro’ is quite Scottish. To work UK-wide we need a name that works longer-term.”
The bank moved from its traditional Charlotte Square offices to a site with a panoramic view of Edinburgh Castle at West Port in 2010, but the premises are now too big for a company that employs 12 staff.
He said the firm would look for an office in the central and West End areas of the city in the next six to nine months.
“We don’t want to be too far away from the Green Investment Bank either,” he added.
“There is a fair bit for us to do in the first year. We had a good start to the year already. We have 10 to 15 active mandates in education, in London and South Wales. It is not like starting a business afresh. The challenge is how do we grow.”
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Tuesday 21 May 2013
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