RSK Group acquires two firms to boost engineering consulting offering

18 April 2018 Authored by Consultancy.uk

Birmingham-based civil engineering consultancy Copeland Wedge Associates has been acquired by its North Western rival, RSK Group. The purchase is the latest in a string of deals by RSK, and also includes Nottingham-based pile testing firm NDT Services. Both firms will continue to operate under their existing brands.

Based in Kingswinford, in the West Midlands, Copeland Wedge Associates (CWA) provides a range of civil and structural engineering services for projects ranging from multimillion-pound developments to niche engineering in sectors such as education, health centres and hotel and leisure facilities. Pile testing specialist Non Destructive Testing (NDT) Services, meanwhile, is based in Nottingham UK, and boasts a wealth of experience in pile integrity testing, static pile maintained load testing and dynamic load testing nationwide. NDT has been providing a wide range of testing services at construction sites throughout the UK for almost 30 years, and has worked on projects including various Airbus UK facilities, Wembley Stadium and the London Olympic Park.

As of Spring 2018, both firms have been bought out by Cheshire-based RSK Group, a professional services firm specialising in environmental and engineering services. The transaction, which concluded for an undisclosed fee, sees RSK continue its £140 million expansion project, having set its sights on 10 targeted acquisitions.

RSK Group acquires two firms to boost engineering consulting offering

A total of 59 staff from across the two businesses (20 staff from NDT and 39 from CWA) will join RSK's geosciences and engineering division and this acquisition takes the group's headcount to more than 2,300 staff in 85 offices worldwide, while CWA will continue to be led by directors David Copeland, Steve Wedge and Jim O'Donnell. At NDT, Directors John Purser and Andrew Martin will likewise remain in place, heading the company and working alongside existing key NDT Services personnel.

RSK’s drive for inorganic growth commenced at the turn of the year, when RSK secured investment from Permira Debt Managers in late 2017. RSK subsequently merged with RSKW – a Scottish management and technical consulting firm which RSK had a small minority stake in for the last 10 years – in January, before the new unified entity acquired CJ Associates and Up and Under Group. RSK’s headcount now stands at over 2300 in 85 offices worldwide, and according to the firm, its latest additions add greater civil and structural engineering expertise to its portfolio.

RSK Chief Executive Alan Ryder said, “I am delighted to join forces with NDT Services and CWA. Both companies have extremely experienced and skilled people who share our common values. Our plan is to invest in the companies and help them to grow. RSK can now offer pile testing to complement our existing geotechnical and structural engineering expertise. And CWA will bring us better access to the Birmingham/West Midlands market and further enhance our engineering teams.”

John Purser, managing director of NDT Services, added, “The prospect of NDT Services moving forward with the support of RSK is exciting for staff, suppliers and clients alike. We feel that adding our specialist pile testing services to the RSK portfolio is a perfect fit that will enable the company to fulfil its potential within the industry.”

Director of CWA, Steve Wedge, also commented, “The announcement of RSK’s acquisition of CWA is very positive news for our business. Combining our expertise with RSK’s considerable engineering strengths means we can grow and deliver ever more powerful solutions to meet our clients’ needs.”

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