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New investment sees Patrick Parsons expand

NCE stock business

Patrick Parsons engineering consultancy has secured a multi-million pound investment and acquired infrastructure specialist THDA.

Private equity firm LDC has backed Patrick Parsons to support the firm’s UK expansion strategy.

The acquisition of Birmingham-based THDA is the latest in the “buy and build strategy” that has seen the business complete six complementary acquisitions in five years.

Patrick Parsons managing director Peter Stienlet told New Civil Engineer: “It’s [LDC investment] pretty huge for us. Patrick Parsons has been around for 50 years but when we did the management buyout [in 2007] we only had eight staff at that time and we were just in Newcastle. We’re now at 250 staff with the latest purchase.

“You reach ceiling points in your business. We were at another barrier level where we had expanded it as far as we could, we’ve been recognised by LDC as being successful in our region and getting their backing means that we can continue that growth without having to pause.

“If they hadn’t come in then we would have stayed at the level we are for a couple of years before then moving on. It’s given the extra kick to kick the business forward again.”

THDA specialise in the design of infrastructure such as highways, roads, earthworks modelling and flood risk assessment, and complement Patrick Parsons commitment to strengthen the infrastructure sector of the business.

Other recent acquisitions include London-based JSA in 2015, Guilford-based Stillwell last year and Manchester-based BCM this year.

Speaking about the company’s next steps Stienlet said they plan to continue expanding.

He said: “We are pretty ambitious, it will be more of the same of what we’ve been doing but with slightly larger acquisitions on the cards.

“It’s really just strengthening our multidisciplinary approach in the offices we’ve got at the moment and looking at the regions, we need to make sure we’ve got all of the regions covered up.

“If you look at our portfolio, south-west is looking a little empty, around the Bristol area, and then Ireland. It’s really just plugging those gaps so that we can provide local service to the clients in those regions which is important to them.”

The deal was led by LDC investment director Ben Snow and Zara Lane, investment origination in Newcastle.

Snow said: “Patrick Parsons has an exceptionally strong management team that has successfully spearheaded the growth of the business, while retaining the values of a smaller sized firm.

“The acquisition of THDA is an exciting development for both businesses. It allows Patrick Parsons to further strengthen its service line and create more opportunities for both its employees and customers in a market that shows strong growth prospects as infrastructure investment continues to rise.”

Patrick Parsons has offices in London, Glasgow, Huddersfield, Manchester, Chester, Birmingham, Guildford, Sydney and Dubai.

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