Contractors group buys Ascot Drummond

The group, which specialises in servicing expatriate IT and telecom contractors, said it had the ‘expertise, commitment and funds to realise the potential of the formula’ in the UK and eventually on a global stage.

Martin Glick, chairman of the Albany Systems Group, described the deal as a ‘real bonus’ and said it would ‘add value to Albany’s contractor base’.

‘I believe this is an important milestone for the group. This acquisition presents an exciting opportunity for us to establish Ascot Drummond as the best accountancy firm for UK contractors,’ Glick added.

Albany will integrate its own accountancy arm called Lane Cavendish into Ascot Drummond, retaining the latter’s branding.

Over the next few weeks Albany is to restructure the back-office system that supports the online firm to enhance the service currently enjoyed by its loyal client base as well as launching a marketing program to attract new clients.

The dotcom amassed 575 clients by mid-July before running into financial difficulties after backers refused to put up more money for the firm. Previously, it received Pounds 6.25m in funding following talks with Mercury Private Equity.

Administrators from Southampton-based Fanshawe Lofts were called and it was thought that finding a buyer would be difficult in the current dotcom climate.

But Mike Phillips, group sales & marketing director at Albany, said he was not concerned about the dotcom market and that Ascot Drummond had a ‘sizeable database’, with a wide range of clients, not just ‘one-man shows’.

Humphrey Drummond together with co-founders Robert Wright and Ali Hakeem, evolved a system where documents were scanned in Dundee and then sent to Pakistan. Employees in Lahore would then complete tasks such as bookkeeping and return documents via the web.

Albany said the appeal and success of Ascot Drummond’s service, combined with its dedication to client care, had enabled the company to keep more than 85% of its client base on board throughout its time in administration.


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