A UK property consultancy founded in Birmingham in the early 1800s has been bought by Canadian group Avison Young.

The GVA name has now been lost as its UK operations have rebranded as Avison Young.

The Birmingham operation will remain in Brindleyplace under the charge of head of office Carl Potter following the undisclosed deal which has now completed after being announced last November.

GVA started life in Birmingham city centre around 200 years ago when HN Grimley and Son was founded in Bennetts Hill.

It merged with Frank Smith and Wilson in 1957 before becoming GVA Grimley in 1998 and then just GVA in 2011.

 

GVA merged with Bilfinger to become Bilfinger GVA in 2014 but a buyout deal by private equity company EQT in 2016 saw it revert to simply GVA.

It is currently working on projects such as the Peddimore industrial development near Sutton Coldfield, Paradise in the city centre and the University of Birmingham's Life Sciences Park in Selly Oak.

The acquisition includes GVA Worldwide which is an international group of licensed affiliate commercial real estate advisory companies with offices in 20 countries.

The newly enlarged group will now have 5,000 staff in 120 offices across 20 countries.

Mr Potter said: "GVA has had strong roots in Birmingham for over 200 years and the news that we will be returning to a partnership model and the culture which that entails has been received with unanimous positivity from the plus 400 people who work out of this office.

"We envisage this will very much be a case of business as usual on a day-to-day basis for our clients but with the added advantage of a great, invigorating corporate culture and a wealth of new experience through our worldwide colleagues.

 

"This will add a global perspective which will, moving forward, be instrumental in ensuring that the advice that we provide sets us apart.

"This is a truly pivotal moment in our evolution and a great springboard into the future."

Chief executive of Avison Young Mark Rose added: "This acquisition represents another milestone in our global expansion strategy and the combination will better position Avison Young to serve our clients across the world.

"In GVA, Avison Young has added a like-minded UK real estate leader - a company that brings a partnership culture formed during more than 200 years in business."

Advisers on the deal were Credit Suisse, KPMG, Gowling WLG, DLA Piper and Stikeman Elliott.