Scottish property group Lomond Capital, which owns Brand Vaughan, acquired the Brighton-based firm for an undisclosed sum.
The Edinburgh-based company, which manages residential properties worth more than £2.6 billion and has 365 staff, has acquired Bonett’s Estate and Lettings Agents in Brighton, bringing the number of properties under its management to around 1,650.
Bonnet’s was established nearly 30 years ago by founder and owner Paul Bonett and had grown into one of Brighton’s most respected property agents. The firm will now merge with and operate under the banner of Lomond’s local business, Brand Vaughan .
“Paul Bonett is a champion of integrity in the Brighton estate agency and lettings market and it was that shared value that appealed to us,” said Brand Vaughan chief executive, Tom Ghibaldan. “We were impressed by his operation in Brighton – its strong reputation for high standards within the local area. The firm will be a welcome addition to the growing Brand Vaughan business.”
Paul Bonett added: “Brand Vaughan is a safe pair of hands and a good fit to take the Bonett’s business forward while safeguarding our high standing reputation within the Brighton and Hove market.”
Lomond Capital chief executive Bruce Evans said a number of industry challenges were leading smaller, independent agents to consider their exit strategies and take the opportunity to sell.
“Additional pressures to income levels such as increased competition, impending abolition of tenant fees, as well as costs associated with increased regulations, mean that many independent agents are looking to de-risk and release value from their businesses,” Evans said.
Lomond was set up in 2010 by insurance and legal industry veterans Stuart Pender and Roger Lane-Smith with the aim of consolidating the highly fragmented residential property investment and management industry. It sells more than £600 million worth of property a year and currently has businesses in Aberdeen, Birmingham, Edinburgh, St Andrews, Manchester and Brighton. Further investments across the country are planned.
Main photo – Paul Bonett with Brand Vaughan chief executive Tom Ghibaldan