Law firm DMH Stallard has advised Weston Williamson + Partners – a leading UK architecture and urban design practice – in its move today to join Egis, one of the biggest consulting, engineering and operating companies in the world.
Two years after the UK’s departure from the European Union, the deal demonstrates that UK architectural exports – worth an estimated £500 million per year – remain very much in demand on the global stage. DMH Stallard is increasingly supporting a number of deals in the professional services sector and understand the circuitous needs of this sector.
Weston Williamson + Partners is an award-winning practice with studios in Manchester, London, Toronto, Sydney and Melbourne, with particular expertise in large-scale infrastructure, master planning and city-shaping projects. The firm has designed and delivered major infrastructure projects in the UK and around the world, with recent projects including two soon-to-be revealed Elizabeth Line stations at Paddington and Woolwich, Melbourne’s Metro Tunnel project, and new residential and mixed-use developments across London. In 2019 the practice won a Queen’s Award for Enterprise in recognition of its outstanding international growth.
Egis is a leading international player active in the consulting, construction engineering and mobility service sectors, with operations in 120 countries worldwide. Egis recently produced the Paris 2050 Carbon Neutral Plan and already works with some of the world’s leading architecture firms. By investing in Weston Williamson + Partners’ talent and established global brand, the partnership expands the practice’s design capability and expertise, opens up new international opportunities for the firm, and strengthens Egis’ global presence in the infrastructure and design sectors. Together, Egis and Weston Williamson + Partners share a powerful combined skillset to address the climate emergency.
Today’s announcement sees the purchase by Egis of a majority stake in Weston Williamson + Partners, with the practice’s name, brand and company leadership carried over under the Egis umbrella. The deal will allow Weston Williamson + Partners to expand their global reach and compete for high profile projects in new markets. The new Weston Williamson + Partners board will be led by founding partners Chris Williamson and Rob Naybour as Chairman and CEO respectively, alongside Weston Williamson + Partners managing partner Philip Breese and four senior Egis-employed board members.
Chris Williamson, Chairman at Weston Williamson + Partners, said:
“It is hugely exciting to secure the next phase of Weston Williamson + Partners’ development. Since our foundation in 1985 we have grown to be one of the UK’s leading architecture practices, with recognised expertise in city-shaping projects. I’m proud of our history, excited by the opportunities that the deal announced today with Egis Group will bring, and looking forward to achieving the next phase of our vision for the practice over the coming years.”
Rob Naybour, CEO at Weston Williamson + Partners, said:
“We are thrilled to be joining Egis Group, and excited by the opportunities to bring our skills and expand our influence on important city-shaping infrastructure projects around the world. For us it’s a great fit: like us, Egis Group is a people-centred business with a strong record of delivery and collaboration, and a clear focus on crafting elegant and sustainable places. This means that it is still very much business as usual in terms of our existing client relationships, our culture and our high levels of service. We are proud of our track record opening studios in Australia and North America, and our integration with Egis Group extends our offer to new clients, wherever they may be in the world.”
David Pringle, Director of Architecture Line at Egis, said:
“We are delighted to welcome Weston Williamson + Partners to Egis. The firm’s talent and award-winning credentials in the design of world class infrastructure projects present enormous synergies with Egis and its existing architectural line. Hong Kong based international architecture firm 10 Design was the first practice to join Egis’s architectural line in 2017 and continues to lead the design of large mixed-use projects worldwide. Together, we are able to offer a compelling design offer to clients across all aspects of transport and the built environment, all around the globe.”
Claire Davies, UK Managing Director at Egis, said:
“In the UK Egis delivers projects which help connect people, protect our environment and meet emission reduction targets. Weston Williamson + Partners are a great addition to our fast growing UK team and will enable us to further support clients in meeting their transport, infrastructure and place shaping ambitions whilst driving sustainable change.”
Helen Mead, of DMH Stallard, said:
“We were delighted to help Weston Williamson + Partners move to the next exciting stage of their development, with the support of Egis. We look forward to watching their continued success as they offer clients an excellent service in all aspects of transport, infrastructure and the built environment in the UK and internationally.”
Weston Williamson + Partners was supported by advisors DMH Stallard, BCMS, Menzies and Hall & Willcox.
Rob Naybour, Founding Partner and CEO at Weston Williamson + Partners commented:
“The advisory team headed up by Andrew Sims, BCMS, Kevin Paget and Ralph Mitchison, Menzies, Helen Mead, DMH Stallard and Oliver Jankowsky, Hall & Wilcox were superb in helping us navigate what was an incredibly complex sale process – our sincerest thanks to them all”
“This was a challenging process and we could not have done it without the teamwork and purpose displayed by our advisory team. The advice was solid and collaborative but the manner of working was superb. Calm, considered, yet firm when it was required. A pleasure for me”