Gratte Brothers & Blick Rothenberg - a relationship spanning a generation

Gratte Brothers Group is a long-standing client of Blick Rothenberg, with a relationship spanning over a generation.

Gratte Brothers were originally an electrical subcontractor who expanded over the years to become a major contractor to blue chip companies in their own right. In addition to their core electrical systems, they diversified into several other areas including mechanical systems, commercial catering facilities, security systems and network systems. The company now has a turnover in excess of £115million.

Ian Bass, Financial Director of Gratte Brothers, said of the relationship "Blick Rothenberg and Gratte Brothers have in a sense 'grown up' together. In the early days, the founder of Gratte Brothers, Derrick Gratte worked with the founder of Blick Rothenberg, Helmut Rothenberg, just as today the next generation enjoy a similar, gainful, working relationship".

In 2000 an opportunity arose for the acquisition by Gratte Brothers of the AG Manly Group, also a long-established family business, engaged in substantial mechanical engineering contracts. Ian Bass said of the acquisition, "This was a perfect opportunity for us. AG Manly was a business with very similar roots to our own and a service which complemented our own perfectly. By adding mechanical contracting to our portfolio of services we were able to offer our clients a single source for all their building services requirements. As advisors and accountants to Gratte Brothers since 1980, Blick Rothenberg were the natural choice to act as corporate finance advisors."

Gratte Brothers and AG Manly entered into discussions with a view to broadening Gratte Brothers' offering. Previous expansion had been as a result of organic growth but it was felt that the opportunity to expand into mechanical services through AG Manly was too good to miss. Blick Rothenberg assisted with negotiations, advised on principal terms and undertook financial due diligence.

Ian Bass added, "Blick Rothenberg helped us every step of the way in this new venture and continue to guide us in all avenues of financial and managerial advice. Our aim for the future is to continue to consolidate the businesses to create a strong, integrated, good quality building services company".