Tuesday 30th November 2021
Home Weekly Business<br />E-newsletter ebusiness weekly news 16/11/2021

House price growth in the East set to be ‘more muted’

After seeing above-average rises over the past decade house price growth in the East of England is set to be more muted next year, according to Savills. The property agent is forecasting house prices in the region will rise by three per cent in 2022 and by 10.4 per cent over the next five years. Prices in the East are also forecast to grow at slower rate than the UK average of 13.1 per cent over the next five years and 3.5 per cent in 2022. But at the higher end of the market – the top five to ten per cent by value – prices in the East are predicted to grow by 19.3 per cent over the next five years and by four per cent in 2022. Ed Meyer, head of residential sales at Savills Cambridge, said: “After such intensity in the market and without the imperative of a stamp duty holiday, we know there’s likely to be less urgency from 2022….As a result, coupled with the first anticipated interest rate rise, our researchers expect price growth in the near term to be somewhat more muted than we have seen of late.” He added: “That said, the regional increases we are predicting remain greater than those forecast for properties in London, while we still expect changes in working patterns to underpin demand in more rural areas, albeit to a lesser degree than over the past 18 months.” The figures show that the average cost of a home in the East is set to rise to £420,276 by 2026 compared to £380,685 currently.

Developer buys land on former Suffolk RAF airfield site with contract for vehicle "super centre"

Property developer Jaynic has bought 91-acres at the former RAF Airfield at Shepherd’s Grove near Stanton in Suffolk from Property Recycling Group and taken on an existing contract to sell 68 acres to Copart UK,  a vehicle remarketing and recycling group. The sale to Copart would create a new 68-acre “super centre” in East Anglia on the A143 as part of a major expansion programme. The Copart Suffolk centre will provide between 100 and 120 new jobs for its directly employed workforce. A masterplan for the site had been adopted by West Suffolk Council, including up to 400 homes but Jaynic is now pursuing a completely commercial development. It will include highway improvements, framework landscaping, on-plot landscaping, the Copart development site and a further 10 acres of commercial land split over four plots. Jaynic will present its proposals in detail to Stanton and Hepworth Parish Councils before holding a public exhibition, ahead of the application being submitted in early 2022. Savills agreed the deal with Copart and is agent on the remaining development land alongside Hazells.

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Law firm advises on motor dealer acquisition

Law firm Birketts has advised EMG Motor Group, which has 11 dealerships across East Anglia, on its purchase of Murketts motor dealership. EMG has locations in Cambridge, Huntingdon, Royston, Stapleford and Alconbury, selling new and used cars as licensed dealerships for Kia, Mazda, MG and Nissan, as well as services for Citroen, Ford, Hyundai and Mitsubishi. Over the last 25 years, EMG has built a reputation for customer service and won the 2021 Autotrader Retailer Award for Customer Experience. Partners Ed Savory (corporate) and Melissa Loucas (commercial property) led the Birketts team. Nick Storey, director at EMG, said: “Ed, Melissa and the Birketts team were exactly the support we needed to ensure this transaction ran smoothly.”

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Norfolk-based firm chosen as a UK start-up champion

King’s Lynn-based Valiant Lingerie, which provides lingerie for women affected by breast cancer, is one of 12 small businesses chosen as champions of UK start-ups by Start Up Loans, part of the British Business Bank. Start up loans ambassador for the East of England Eleanor Howie (photo, right) secured £6,500 through Virgin StartUp in spring 2020. The firm is one of 6,170 East of England-based businesses that have received a loan since 2012, worth a total of over £56m. Through a network of delivery partners, the start up loans programme provides pre-and-post loan support to help with a business plan, a fixed-interest loan of up to £25,000 to start or develop a business, and mentoring and other support. Paul Scully, small business minister, said: “Start Up Loans are a vital pillar in our efforts to level up every part of the country and offer opportunities to hard-working, dynamic people regardless of their background.” Nationally, the programme has delivered over 88,000 loans since 2012, providing more than £790m of funding.

New partner appointed at law firm

Bury-based law firm  Greene & Greene has appointed a new partner, Hugo Greer-Walker, as Neil Grigg, a partner since 2002, is leaving for a new venture in property. Neil Grigg is stepping back as a legal practitioner to pursue a new avenue in the property industry working alongside his wife, Katie. After qualifying in 1998 and joining the firm in 2000, Neil Grigg progressed to partner and then head of the commercial property team before passing that baton to Tim Mendes da Costa last year. The firm’s commercial property team acts for large listed plcs through to owner managed businesses and developers on acquisitions, disposals, developments and finance. Managing partner Simon Ratcliffe said: “Neil has been the cornerstone of this department and its growth for many years. We are thankful for his great leadership of the team and support for our clients.”

Hugo Greer-Walker (photo right), who is noted as ‘incisive and client-friendly’ in the Legal 500 (UK 2021), joined the firm in January 2020 with wide experience and roles previously at Clifford Chance and as a partner at Halliwells and Stone King. “Since joining us at the start of 2020, Hugo has made a fantastic impression on clients and colleagues alike and we are delighted to welcome Hugo to the partnership. We look forward to working together to continue to grow our commercial property team,” said head of the commercial property team, Tim Mendes da Costa.

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Call for sustainable businesses to join cleantech organisation

A  centre for environmentally-friendly tech in the UK, Cambridge Cleantech, is marking its tenth anniversary with a call for more companies to join its organisation. Since 2011, Cambridge Cleantech has helped start-ups and entrepreneurs raise more than £135 million in backing, seen £26 million invested in climate-friendly technology through collaborations with corporates, and saved 216,000 tonnes of CO2 being released every year. Martin Garratt, CEO of Cambridge Cleantech, said: “There has never been a more urgent time to support the cleantech sector and we will continue to play a pivotal role in bringing climate-focused innovators, corporates, investors and academics together.”  He is calling on start-up and small companies with sustainable businesses to join the flagship Cleantech Collaboration Day on Thursday, 18th November.

Newmarket hotel put up for sale

A buyer is being sought for The Rosery Country House Hotel and Restaurant in Exning, near Newmarket, which dates to the 1800s. With 16 bedrooms, it includes a principal building together with a separate coach house and garden rooms. The venue also has a large patio area, mature gardens and a private car park and it attracts corporate and private events and weddings. Ben Green, director at agent Eddisons, said: “The Rosery offers an excellent opportunity for an investor or hotelier to take on an established and profitable business with significant trading potential. The substantial building and large mature grounds offer further development potential, subject to planning.”

Professional services firm launches updated website

Professional services firm Scrutton Bland has launched an updated website. The firm has also come out of lockdown with an unprecedented number of vacancies and a gold accreditation in the Best Employers Eastern Region. Elizabeth O’Hanlon, head of marketing, said: “Our primary goal during the redesign process was to create a more valuable, user-friendly and responsive resource for our visitors across the website. Specifically, we wanted to focus on making it easier for people to navigate and locate useful information about our professional solutions for their particular need, not only at their desk but on mobile devices.”

Managing partner Jason Fayers said: “We wanted to create a website which presents our brand values and services in a clear and attractive way. We’ve incorporated case studies which highlight completed projects, and a News & Views page containing richer content such as information and explanations of topical issues affecting both businesses and private individuals, newsletters for specific sectors and links to events that we are – at last! –now starting to hold again.” Scrutton Bland’s website was developed by integrated marketing agency StrategiQ. The new website can be visited at www.scruttonbland.co.uk

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Business interest in accommodating Sizewell C

Over 100 people attended Suffolk Chamber’s Sizewell C Supply Chain event last week in Ipswich which looked at the wide variety of accommodation services that will be needed if the proposed nuclear power station goes ahead. Sizewell C is expected to bring investment of over £4bn to the Eastern region and benefit a wide range of business sectors. Insights and updates were also given from Hinkley Point C, which is currently construction in Somerset. Steve Carroll, senior supply chain lead at Sizewell C, said: “Sizewell C will be a catalyst for the region and we want to see all businesses, no matter what size or sector, benefit from this project.” A decision on whether Sizewell C goes ahead is expected next year.

Marketing campaign delivers results during pandemic

During the pandemic in August 2020, property agent Fenn Wright launched a marketing campaign for a new development site - Orchard Gardens in Assington, near Sudbury in Suffolk - being built by Roman Homes. Although the three and four bedroom homes were not built when the campaign began, all 15 plots were reserved by May 2021 with most sold before building work was complete. Tye Harvey, director at Roman Homes, said: “We recently sold most of our most entire site off plan with the great marketing of Fenn Wright and the personal attention provided by their representative Steve Lillistone, who oversaw the site from inception to completion. We look forward to working again with Fenn Wright and Steve in particular on future developments.”

Steve Lillistone, of Fenn Wright’s new homes division, added: “Orchard Gardens proved to be an exceptionally popular development by Roman Homes. The mix of properties along with the different house types and high standard of specification, care and finish were extremely well received by prospective buyers.”

Photo (l-r): Andy Moon from Roman Homes; Neil Sell, Jenny Olley and Steve Lillistone from Fenn Wright; and Tim Wheater from Roman Homes).

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