Sussex estate agencies Brand Vaughan and Michael Jones join forces in ‘transformational deal’

31st Jan 2023
Mike Jones and Tom Ghibaldan - Lomond

Two of the most prominent names on property boards across Sussex – who between them have helped many thousands of people move home – have joined forces.

Brand Vaughan, part of the expanding Lomond, and Michael Jones & Company have merged in a “transformational deal” to co-create the market leading sales and letting agency across Brighton and Hove, Worthing, and along the South Coast.

The home-grown Sussex agencies will retain their own distinctive brands, branch networks, and teams of staff – and bring them together in one company as they pool almost 50 years of experience.

Together, they will manage a rental portfolio of more than 4,000 properties.

Will Linley, Lomond’s Managing Director, said: “We are thrilled to welcome a market-leading agency of Michael Jones’ calibre to our rapidly-growing network.

“It strengthens and broadens our presence across Sussex, which is a prime location for further business growth.

“We are actively exploring acquisition opportunities in the county to expand our lettings and sales footprint across its most sought-after places to live and work.”

Brand Vaughan, whose original Cambridge Residential Lettings business launched in the late 1990s operates four established offices on the South Coast. These are at Preston Road in Preston Village, Brighton; St George’s Road in Kemp Town; Western Road in Hove, as well as Palms Properties in Brighton Marina, after acquiring its rental portfolio in March 2021.

Michael Jones & Company, which is marking its 30th anniversary this year, has a similarly strong team operating out of six branches – Worthing, Lancing, Goring-by-Sea, Findon, Ferring and Rustington.

Both companies said the agreement heralded the start of an exciting new journey, and was a signal of confidence in the Sussex residential property market and investing in its future

Tom Ghibaldan, Chief Executive of Brand Vaughan, said: “This is a transformational deal that is a great strategic and geographical fit for both agencies and our people.

“We can now work together and take advantage of almost five decades of award-winning expertise, market insight and local knowledge to drive customer service improvements and lead industry innovation.

“By pooling our expertise and resources, we aim to enhance the range of market-leading services we offer all our buyers and sellers, tenants and landlords, as well as developers. Together, we will truly be the number one agency in the area.

“Both companies are already market leaders in our respective locations, with enviable reputations built up over years of hard work and commitment to our customers. For that reason, both brand names will remain in place, whilst being operated behind the scenes as one company.”

Michael Jones, Chairman of the agency he founded in 1991, said: “This is a milestone moment for two like-minded, Sussex born-and-bred agencies.

“Both sets of teams have strong Sussex roots, enjoy the same traditional values, and share a passion for properties and the people who live in them.

“Drawing on that synergy, joining forces is very much a natural progression. It equips us with a strong platform on which to expand further through organic growth and acquisition, and ensure we remain first choice for our customers.”

Leading mid-market private equity firm LDC backed the creation of Lomond Group in January 2021, in a £100m transaction. The move saw Linley & Simpson and Lomond join forces to create a new national lettings and estate agency group capable of delivering rapid growth.

The group has brought together some of the strongest names on the UK High Street, including Brand Vaughan; Linley & Simpson; Thornley Groves; John Shepherd; Stonehouse and Braemore.

It has major hubs across key rental hot spots across England and Scotland, including Aberdeen, Birmingham, Brighton, Edinburgh, Hull, Leeds, Manchester, Sheffield and York.