DEALS totalling £160m have been completed by Garbutt + Elliott in the last 12 months.

The corporate finance team which operates from the firm’s York and Leeds offices handled 65 UK-wide transactions in a year that saw it appointed to advise on more activity outside its Yorkshire and Humber heartland.

These included management buyouts, acquisitions, finance raising, and business sales in sectors including manufacturing, agriculture, catering, telecoms, retail, healthcare, construction, haulage, residential care, IT, and food.

Deals have included supporting a management buy-out at Warrington-based data services firm, Qbase, advising on growth investment by London-based Seed Partners in international fitting out company, DDI Projects, Dorset, and a confidential deal in Yorkshire in a struggling commercial sector which started before lockdown and completed in May.

Head of corporate finance, Tony Farmer said: “After an encouraging year, the pandemic is creating new challenges but the big difference to the banking crisis 11 years ago is that the money supply is available and two significant deals we completed during lockdown shows that there is still an appetite for transactions.

"Some deals that we have in hand were placed on hold during the lockdown because of their commercial sector. Others slowed down but are now progressing and we are already seeing renewed interest in good-quality businesses.

“There will inevitably be some business failures as some struggling sectors thin out but I’m optimistic that values will hold up for good businesses. Our team has broad experience, and having two former high street bankers in David Streather and Neil Williams, enables us to cover corporate finance from all angles, including helping distressed businesses where we have the experience to re-structure, refinance and help them grow rather than failing.”