Lexington Corporate Finance has acted as lead advisor to Cardiff based The Urbanists Limited on its Employee Buyout and associated debt fundraise from Development Back of Wales (DBW) in order to facilitate the transfer of ownership of the business to an Employee Trust.
The Urbanists, set up in 2005, is an urban design consultancy, bringing together planning, landscape architecture and architecture.
The buy-out has been led by the new board of Directors with James Brown acting as Managing Director, and Michelle Tuck and Mark Farr who are also Directors. The buy-out follows the retirement of one of the founding members of the Company, Martin Sullivan, who will remain with he business in a consultancy capacity.
James Brown said "We are extremely confident that the future of The Urbanists remains in the hands of the people who understand it best and who will strive to continue to deliver the very highest standards of service for our clients, We have achieved much under Martin's leadership and would like to thank him for his significant contribution in The Urbanists story so far".
The Lexington team, led by Thomas Edwards, worked closely with the Management Team of The Urbanists to structure the transaction and then with Steve Elias at DBW on the funding package.
Thomas said "We are delighted to have advised The Urbanists and the Management Team on this milestone transaction as the business transfers to employee ownership. The culture created by the new Management Team and Martin has been fundamental to the success of the business and the new structure will allow that to continue.
Employee Ownership Trusts (EOT's) were established in 2014 in order to encourage shareholders facilitate wider employee ownership. An EOT buy-out represents an attractive alternative to a trade sale or traditional Management buy-out for vendors, as when the sale of a company is to an EOT the transaction is exempt from Capital Gains Tax