Rok expansion continues with takeover of Avonside

Rapidly growing listed property and construction group Rok has acquired a maintenance firm with nearly 200 staff in the North West.

Avonside, which has an office in Leigh, employs 130 plumbers and 40 support staff in the region out of a total of 450 staff across the North and Scotland.

Rok paid £16.5m, comprising £11.55m in cash and £4.95m in Rok shares, for the firm. Rok will also assume £1m of debt.

In the year ended 31 December 2006, Avonside reported pre-tax profits of £2.2m on a turnover of £42m. Net assets of Avonside at completion will be £3.8m.

Garvis Snook, chief executive of Rok, said: "Avonside is a high quality business with very strong management and this deal will expand our own labour force where our preference for direct delivery of services is key to customer satisfaction and margin growth. The acquisition also provides a strong platform from which to extend our plumbing, heating and electrical services across the rest of the UK in our pursuit of becoming the Nation's Local Builder."

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