Baker Tilly buys EB-5 consulting specialist Wright Johnson

24 January 2017

Baker Tilly Virchow Krause has, through its subsidiary Baker Tilly Capital, acquired Wright Johnson, a visa specialist consultancy and EB-5 consulting firm. The deal, which sees six specialists transfer to Baker Tilly, improves its ability to deliver project finance solutions across the US.

Wright Johnson (WJ) is a Florida based EB-5 visa for Immigrant Investors consulting firm, founded in 2007. The company offers a range of advisory services in the areas of Regional Centre development, economic impact studies, and business plan development for investors seeking to use the US Immigrant Investor Program*.

WJ is to be integrated into Baker Tilly Virchow Krause’s Baker Tilly Capital**, where it further augments the firm’s position in delivering project finance solutions, besides its wider offering in New Markets Tax Credits (NMTC) and Historic Tax Credits. For WJ the addition improves its ability to scale its consulting services within Baker Tilly’s wider, and global, network – as well as create more value for existing clients. Six professions, including Wright Johnson President Aaron Goforth, who becomes a Partner, transfer to Baker Tilly.

Baker Tilly buys EB-5 consulting specialist Wright Johnson

Baker Tilly Chairman and CEO Alan Whitman says, “This is an excellent strategic and cultural fit with Baker Tilly and Baker Tilly Capital. WJ is recognized as one of the most successful providers of comprehensive consulting services for EB-5 projects and this addition gives Baker Tilly Capital a great competitive advantage as a one-stop shop for EB-5 financing.”

Goforth says, “Our team is very pleased to join Baker Tilly. Becoming part of this exceptional firm will expand our capabilities to help existing clients and leverage additional resources to scale our services to bring more value to our clients.”

* The programme is focused on fostering further economic growth in the US by enabling a foreign-born investor to apply for permanent residence on the grounds that their investment in a US commercial enterprise creates of preserves 10 permanent, full-time jobs for qualified US workers.

** Baker Tilly Capital, a subsidiary of Baker Tilly Virchow Krause, is a FINRA broker-dealer that is approved to offer EB-5 investments.


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SQW Group purchases property-based regeneration consultancy

19 April 2019

UK consulting firm SQW Group has completed its first acquisition since it completed a management buyout in January 2019. BBP Regeneration joins the company having collaborated with SQW for more than 20 years.

Established in 1983, SQW Group now operates all over the world. Comprising SQW, Oxford Innovation, Oxford Innovation Services – one of the UK’s leading innovation centre operators – and Oxford Investment Opportunities Network, the organisation’s origins can be traced to Britain’s two ancient university cities: Oxford, through Oxford Trust founders, Martin and Audrey Wood, and Cambridge, through SQW’s work in producing The Cambridge Phenomenon.

The consultancy specialises in public policy, working with entities from the public, private and voluntary sectors to research, develop, implement and evaluate social and economic development interventions. It now employs over 250 people across regional offices in London, Oxford and Edinburgh, and provides business support to over 4,000 entrepreneurs and small businesses each year. At the start of 2019, SQW secured its independence in a management buyout, advised on by M&A experts from Liberty Corporate Finance and Penningtons Manches.

SQW Group purchases property-based regeneration consultancy

SQW has strengthened its position as a provider of services across the business spectrum with the acquisition of BBP Regeneration. Founded in 1994, the consulting firm specialises in land and property-based regeneration and growth schemes, and is a leading social and economic development consultancy. 

The two firms first worked together over 20 years ago, when SQW and BBP collaborated to develop the first Regional Economic Strategy for the South East. More recently, they developed an economic strategy for Thanet and are now working together in locations stretching from Cwmbran via Oxfordshire to London.

With the addition of BBP, SQW can now provide an integrated advisory service for organisations developing property schemes which deliver economic benefit to their local area. By joining SQW, meanwhile, BBP hopes to further enhance its ability to support clients in delivering property and place-making ambitions. 

Speaking about the deal, SQW CEO David Crichton-Miller commented, “The UK more than ever needs solutions to the challenges of places – of high streets under threat, of meeting housing delivery targets, and of both economically over-successful and economically challenged towns and cities – and the combination of SQW and BBP is uniquely suited to developing those solutions. [This deal] brings together critical and complementary services relating to places to serve our clients with leading edge and practical advice.”

Andy Smith, Director of BBP Regeneration, added, “SQW shares with BBP the same values of seeking to provide outstanding, practical, real world advice that helps get buildings built and places developed.  We greatly look forward to the opportunities that come from joining our two organisations together.”