Thrings negotiates sale of T Brewer to Grafton Group

By Anita Jaynes on 22 February, 2016

Leading commercial law firm Thrings has advised the shareholders of specialist timber importer and merchant T Brewer & Co Ltd on its acquisition by UK and Ireland-based building materials business Grafton Group plc for an undisclosed sum.

T. Brewer & Co Ltd, which has been supplying timber to the London and the Home Counties construction markets since its inception in 1888, trades from branches in Clapham and Enfield – where it has in-house milling facilities – and Amersham.

The FTSE 250-listed Grafton Group plc is an independent builders’ merchant, DIY retailer, plumbers’ merchant and dry mortar manufacturing company. Operating in the British, Irish, Belgian and Dutch markets, it has 600 branches and has an annual turnover of more than £2bn.

Under the terms of the transaction, T. Brewer & Co Ltd – which turned over in excess of £14m last year – will retain its name. Co-directors Keith Fryer, Rodney Scoles and Nick Brewer will also remain in post to oversee the transition to Grafton Group’s new management team.

The transaction was led by corporate partner John Davies and senior associate solicitor Simon Hore from Thrings’ South West Corporate team. They were assisted by members of the firm’s Commercial Property, Employment and Commercial teams. Corporate finance advice was provided by Smith & Williamson.

Keith Fryer, who is also the current president of the Timber Trade Federation, said: “Selling a business is always a stressful time; having the right team in place is critical and we engaged Thrings through an assessment against other strong competition. We have been extremely pleased with the professionalism and quality that John and Simon brought to the process.”

Simon Hore added: “After more than 20 years of owning and developing a highly successful business, T Brewer’s shareholders felt it was time for them to step back from the business and realise their investment.

“Thrings’ Corporate teams regularly assist owners of SME businesses to facilitate their exit and we are delighted to have had the opportunity to work with, and advise, Keith, Rodney and Nick on all legal aspects of this transaction.”

Pictured above: John Davies and Simon Hore of Thrings.