Dow Schofield Watts sees deal values triple
Posted by Richard Bell on 09 Jan 2017
Advisory firm Dow Schofield Watts achieved its best year to date in 2016 after seeing its deal values triple.
During the last 12 months, the Daresbury-based firm advised on 42 deals worth over £770m, which is nearly half a billion pounds more than the year previous.
Dow Schofield Watts said 2016 was also a landmark year for the North’s wider dealmaking community, with strong deal activity driven by strategic trade buyers and private equity investors alike.
Commenting further, the company said that while the outcome of the EU Referendum introduced an element of uncertainty, firms managed to adopt a ‘business as usual’ attitude while awaiting more tangible Brexit announcements.
In addition to welcoming new faces to its team over the course of the year, 2016 also saw Dow Schofield Watts expand with the launch of a wealth planning venture and a merger with forensic accountancy business Bridge Houghton LLP.
Key deals included Cheshire-based environmental consultancy RSK Group’s acquisition of ADAS and LDC’s sale of Waterfall Catering Group to Parisian multinational Elior Group SA.
Similarly, Dow Schofield Watts’ private equity arm, PHD Equity Partners, sold its stake in tattoo supplies firm Barber of Sheffield to RJD Partners.
Dow Schofield Watts founder James Dow said: “During 2016 we have continued to build our capabilities and expand our offering in line with our goal to become the independent advisor of choice for commercial and private equity clients.
“It has been a landmark year for us and for the wider northern dealmaking community.”
He continued: “With a plethora of new private equity and debt funds and some significant developments in advisory firms, the North West now has the capacity to handle even larger international deals capably and confidently. Manchester has firmly established its position as a leading centre for financial and professional services.”
Ed Brentnall, partner in Dow Schofield Watts’ Transaction Services, commented: “While business was sluggish in the immediate aftermath of the Brexit vote, in the final quarter we’ve experienced the highest level of enquiries and live jobs since we started the Transaction Services practice eight years ago.
“With demand coming from private equity firms, venture capital trusts, large corporates and banks, it’s a very positive start to 2017.”