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SMC Group, Britain's biggest firm, to go global

The founder and boss of the ever-acquisitive SMC Group has set his sights on international expansion.

Stewart McColl is understood to be considering a takeover in the Far East as a means of securing an advantage in the burgeoning Chinese market.

This would be SMC's first move into the global market. To date, all of its many takeovers have been in Britain.

It is one of these purchases which adds logic to setting up business in the Far East. SMC Alsop has an office in Shanghai, and McColl is understood to have ambitions to complement this growing business.

Last month, SMC became the largest employer of fully qualified architects, with a total that far exceeds that of BDP, the long-term number one of the AJ100 ( Ultra-acquisitive SMC becomes the largest practice in Britain - but is still hungry for more).

In a separate move, SMC has also clarified that it is 'not finished with Scotland yet, following the successful takeover in September of the Parr Partnership'.

by Ed Dorrell

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