Bilfinger in €150m bid for UK's GVA Grimley Holdings
German engineering and services company Bilfinger has offered to buy privately owned British commercial property consultant GVA Grimley Holdings, in a deal which sources said valued the firm at about €150m.
Bilfinger has been on a buying spree since 2011, spending about €800m acquiring about two dozen companies as it reduces its dependence on the construction market, which can be vulnerable to hefty economic swings and price wars.
It said on Tuesday it had submitted an offer to the nearly 300 shareholders of GVA Grimley and both parties have agreed to keep the terms confidential. The offer runs for four weeks.
Sources familiar with the deal said the terms valued GVA at about €177m. GVA generated a turnover of €174m in the year to the end of April, up from €166m on the previous year.
Bilfinger's acquisitions include UK facility services company Europa, automation technology specialist GreyLogix and power plant control systems specialist Helmut Mauell.
The company said last week it planned to sell significant parts of its construction business.
The German firm said GVA was "highly profitable", has 1,500 employees and aims for sales of around €190m in the current year.
GVA said the deal would help the British brokerage compete globally with the world's biggest real estate advisers, which include Jones Lang LaSalle and CBRE, for mandates.
The acquisition of GVA will more than double sales at Bilfinger's real estate division from the current level of around €160m, Bilfinger said.