Almost 20 per cent of the top 1,000 architecture practices in the UK are ripe for takeover attempts, according to a report
Market analysts Plimsoll Publishing said stockpiles of cash, low rates of growth and ageing directors left 198 firms in line for acquisition attempts.
The study found that one in three practices was running at a loss as the economic downturn continued to hamper the industry.
Senior analyst David Pattison said: ‘One hundred and ninety-eight businesses in the architects market are showing classic acquisition criteria.
‘They are all declining in financial strength, many have an ageing board and are still privately owned.
‘These companies will need the support of their current owners, or investment, to ensure they have a future. Given the circumstances, it’s quite possible that perhaps some of the directors will be looking to retire or even consider a sale.’