Hurley Palmer Flatt Group

Adviser to Hurley Palmer Flatt Group, an engineering consultancy company, on its sale to HDR Inc.

The deal

The team led by Mark Farlow has successfully advised the shareholders of engineering consultancy firm, Hurley Palmer Flatt Group (HPF) on the sale of the company to HDR Inc (HDR), the US-based architectural, engineering, and consulting firm.

HPF Group is the United Kingdom’s leading independent engineering consultancy, providing solutions for the built environment. Services include mechanical, electrical and plumbing; civil and structural engineering; and commissioning management, with particular expertise in institutional, high-rise multi-use, financial and commercial “smart” buildings. The firm also specializes in energy and sustainable “green” building design, and mission critical facilities and complex data centers, including digital management for buildings.

Established in 1968, Hurley Palmer Flatt Group now has more than 500 active clients, many of which are Fortune 500 firms representing the top technology and financial clients in the world. With more than 500 staff members in 10 offices, they have grown steadily through innovation and acquisition.

Mark Farlow was appointed by the shareholders of Hurley Palmer Flatt Group to conduct a full sales process, which involved marketing the business to carefully selected overseas trade acquirers. The shareholders were looking for a buyer who presented the best strategic fit for the longstanding staff and client base, who understood HPF’s values and culture and who could help achieve growth moving forwards. HPF received global interest from numerous potential buyers, before agreeing on the sale to HDR in the USA.

Headquartered in Omaha, HDR is an employee-owned firm that offers engineering, architecture, environmental and construction services. Operating in all 50 US states and across 60 countries, HDR has over 10,000 employees generating revenue of $2.26 billion in 2018. Notable projects include the Hoover Dam Bypass, Fort Belvoir Community Hospital, and Roslin Institute building. In 2018 it was voted the 6th best engineering firm in the world.

HDR wanted to expand their presence and services into the United Kingdom and were looking for an acquisition to help facilitate that goal. The acquisition of HPF brings together HDR’s global practice with HPF Group’s strategic locations in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, and in the Asia-Pacific region. About the acquisition, Eric Keen, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of HDR said, “Hurley Palmer Flatt Group brings strong client relationships and specialised skill sets to HDR that, when combined with our capabilities, offer tremendous possibilities. By Combining our teams of professionals, we will develop a stronger building engineering practice globally.”

Mark supported the shareholders of HPF with the sale, structuring and negotiating the deal and working alongside Marriott Harrison to finalise the legal documentation.

Deal summary


June 2019


Business Services

Deal type:

Selling a business

Deal size:


We are delighted with the support provided by Mark and his team, from identifying HDR as a good potential partner, through to negotiating and closing the transaction. Paul Flatt Managing Director of Hurley Palmer Flatt Group

Related team

Mark Farlow

Mark Farlow

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James Mines

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