ANNOUNCEMENT! Newable capitalises on flexible workspace revolution with Citibase acquisition
14th November 2018
I am delighted to inform you that we have completed the acquisition of Citibase plc. As ever with these things, I apologise for not being able to discuss this matter earlier.
Although the terms of the deal prevent me from revealing the purchase price, I can confirm that this is the largest single transaction in our history. It also represents a major step forward in delivering on our growth plans. It helps us build out our ‘platform’ so that Newable can provide companies working at the heart of the economy with all the essential resources they need in order to thrive – Money, Advice and Space.
Founded in 1993, Citibase currently operates 40 business centres stretching from Aberdeen to Brighton. They have opened six sites already this year with a further seven planned before the end of the financial year. The business is substantially profitable and has growth plans that align well with our Dream Big goals. Citibase has around 150 staff and their head office is in Birmingham. You can find out more about their business at www.citibase.com
Citibase has been at the forefront of the “flexible office” revolution. They enable small business Customers to access offices on flexible terms and building owner Clients to generate cash from under-utilised space. As such, Citibase can be described as a “managed service” business.
A classic proof of concept is our building at Queen Elizabeth Street. Although we had several years of the lease still outstanding, this site effectively became redundant space when we relocated to Aldersgate Street. Partnering with Citibase, we turned QES into serviced offices. It was fully let within a few weeks. This was a win:win:win. A win for our customer base who had the option of affordable offices in a good location. A win for Newable as we now have an income stream. A win for Citibase as they receive management fees and a share of the profitability of the site.
Our highly successful partnership at QES encouraged us to explore the possibility of expanding the relationship and this has led to the acquisition.
Values are vital to us all. We have spent a lot of time with Citibase’s CEO Steve Jude, and as part of the Due Diligence process visited nearly all of their business centres. We are confident that both parties share cultures and working practices that will complement each other.
Citibase is an extremely well run and profitable business already. We therefore intend to enable and encourage Steve Jude and his team to carry on with (and accelerate) this great work. Steve will report directly to me and join the Newable Leadership Team.
Citibase’s customer base shares many similarities with the businesses at the heart of the economy we strive to serve. (Although it is worth noting that it turns out that many larger, enterprises also value the winning combination of flexibility and affordability offered by Citibase.) There is much to gain for example by offering our range of financial products and providing international trade expertise through the Export Engine for example.
We have an integration plan in place and I would like to take this opportunity of introducing two new team members. Paul Smith will be helping to integrate the respective financial and operational systems and Agne Nilsson will be helping us to identify strategic growth opportunities. This may help you put names to faces you might have seen at Aldersgate for the last few weeks.
Please make Steve and the team from Citibase most welcome and help to make the partnership even more successful than we expect it to be.
I would like to thank Mike Walsh, Azim Hosein and Neha Thakrar in particular for their hard work on this transaction.
Finally, can I ask you to keep this announcement within our business for now as the press announcements are being finalised.
Please feel free to contact me with any questions.