David Smith Milne, Place Capital, P.Andy Spinoza
David Smith-Milne (pictured) set up Place Capital with Peter Martin earlier this year. Credit: via Medlock Media

Place Capital makes third acquisition

Neil Tague

The regeneration specialist has picked up Manchester architect Loop Systems as it continues its buy-and-build strategy.

Place Capital Group was formed by ex-Placefirst leadership duo David Smith-Milne and Peter Martin in early 2021 to work with local authorities and landlords to regenerate neglected housing estates and deliver affordable housing.

The company has made no bones about targeting rapid growth through acquisitions. Earlier this year it acquired the Fourth Street placemaking consultancy and established design practice Grounded.

Established in 2002, Loop Systems is described as a Manchester-based specialist architecture practice that uses participative design processes to deliver architectural solutions for community groups, housing providers, ethical enterprises and the charity sector.

Recent Loop projects include a number of assignments with Unicorn Grocery Co-operative, the vegan food retailer in Chorlton, and supporting a local community to take ownership of and redevelop the grade two-listed Stretford Public Hall in Trafford. It has worked in affordable housing, including retrofit solutions.

Since 2017 Loop has operated under the management and ownership of Stephen McCusker and Sarah Renshaw. It employs five architecture staff and, with the backing of Place Capital Group, expects to expand substantially over the next twelve months.

Under the terms of the deal, Loop Systems will retain its own brand and management structure.

David Smith-Milne, Place’s group chief executive, said: “To date, we have been working as Loop’s client and have been highly impressed by their attentiveness, the carefulness of their design approach and their commitment to participative design.

“These qualities fit into our philosophy and align perfectly with the nature and requirements of our estate renewal projects.”

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