Lomond Capital, the Edinburgh-based property investor and consolidator, has bolstered its presence south of the Border with the acquisition of a Midlands lettings and estate agency.
Wolf’s manages more than 750 properties, bringing the number of units managed by the Scottish group’s Birmingham operation, John Shepherd, to about 2,000.
We are very excited about our new Birmingham city centre officeStuart Pender
The deal is the second since Lomond Capital completed a recent fund raising process that provided the group with £37.5 million of financial fire-power to expand its existing regional network and extend its reach to the south coast of England and London. It follows the acquisition of Brighton-based agent Brand Vaughan.
The Birmingham deal will see the John Shepherd business extend its footprint into the key Harborne market by retaining and rebranding Wolf’s branch in the area. Wolf’s city centre business, meanwhile, will join with John Shepherd’s new central branch when it opens next month. The staff will also transfer over to the new owner.
Lomond Capital chief executive Stuart Pender said: “Not only is Wolf’s an excellent business bringing a strong lettings portfolio and high quality staff but it also fills in the remaining gaps in John Shepherd’s geographic coverage in the area.
“We are very excited about our new Birmingham city centre office. We have a strong pipeline of further acquisitions across the country and more approaches every week.”
Lomond Capital, which was set up less than seven years ago, has built up a £2.5 billion portfolio of residential assets, sells more than £600m worth of property a year and employs some 365 staff. It currently has businesses in Aberdeen, Birmingham, Brighton, Edinburgh, Manchester and St Andrews and is planning further investments across the south of England and London.
Richard Crathorne and Gary Black, joint chief executives of John Shepherd Lettings and Estate Agents, said: “We have admired the Wolf’s business for many years and we are therefore delighted to welcome it and the Wolf’s staff into the John Shepherd family.
“Wolf’s brings with it a high quality lettings and sales operation and a reputation for strong customer service.”
Radovan Vuckovic, the former owner of Wolf’s, added: “The John Shepherd and Wolf’s businesses are an excellent fit. I know the Wolf’s team will relish the new opportunities that working with Lomond’s local firm, John Shepherd, will bring.
“I will continue growing the Wolf’s block management business independently and look forward to working with John Shepherd in future.”
Lomond received private equity backing from MML Capital Partners in 2014 to accelerate expansion in the residential rental property market. In April of this year, it secured £37.5m of capital funding from Clydesdale Bank and Tosca Debt Capital. Lomond recently appointed Bruce Evans as managing director.
Pender was previously chief executive of Paymentshield, an insurance business which he acquired in 2004 with the backing of Bank of Scotland Integrated Finance.