PKF Cooper Parry and Clement Keys set to merge

27 November 2015

PKF Cooper Parry and Clement Keys, two Midlands accountancy and business advisory firms, have revealed they are in advanced talks to join forces – creating one of the larger specialised professional services firms in the region.

With over 230 employees, PKF Cooper Parry is one of the larger accountancy and business consultancy firms based in the Midlands*. Since it joined the global accountancy network PKF International in January 2014, the firm has booked strong growth – it has taken on 60 new team members over the last 12 months – and unveiled ambitious plans. Earlier this year PKF Cooper Parry for instance disclosed plans to open a new base in the city centre of Birmingham, with the aim of quickly growing the team to a size of 75 or more, while medium-term targets envisage the firm doubling in size by 2018.

PKF Cooper Parry and Clement Keys set to merge

Based in Edgbaston, Clement Keys, founded in in 1885, has seven partners and 100 staff. The firm is currently not a member of an international network but is affiliated with PrimeGlobal, a worldwide association of independent firms.

In a joint statement, PKF Cooper Parry and Clement Keys have shared that they are in advanced merger talks, with discussions expected to be concluded in the coming weeks. “We expect the merger to take place in early January 2016,” explains Ade Cheatham, Chief Executive of PKF Cooper Parry.

If the deal goes ahead, the merged entity will have a combined revenue of £30 million and a team of more than 350 people across its two offices in the East and West Midlands. Cheatham says the strategic move reflects the appetite and commitment both firms have for growing and becoming the dominant force in the region. “This is an exciting and significant merger for both firms. We share a closely aligned vision to be number one in the privately-owned market across the whole of the Midlands through creating a fiercely independent firm.”

Joe Bates and Ade Cheatham

Joe Bates, Managing Partner at Clement Keys, adds: “We have spent a number of years growing our market share and so has PKF Cooper Parry. Bringing the two firms together will broaden our services to businesses in our region and strengthen our position in the marketplace.”

* In May last year PKF Cooper Parry brought staff from its Nottingham, Derby and Leicester bases under one roof at the East Midlands Airport. The advisory firm also has a base in London.


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.”