Jersey firm set for property boost

The property consultancy arm of leading Jersey firm Mourant du Feu & Jeune is set for a major boost following the launch of a joint venture with UK property consultancy giant Weatherall Green & Smith.

In what is effectively a franchise operation, Mourant du Feu's existing property company, Grenville Property Services (GPS), has negotiated to use the Weatherall Green name and has put in place a profit-share agreement with the UK consultancy.

However, the company will continue to be owned and controlled by Mourant du Feu, operating in the same building as the law firm. Weatherall Green will have a representative on the board of directors.

Richard Barnes, the Mourant du Feu partner who heads the new venture, said: “We wanted to take GPS on to be a major name player.”

Barnes said that he put forward the proposal to raise GPS' market visibility in the middle of last year, when he was asked to develop a five-year business plan for the unit.

“We believe this venture will unlock our true potential and provide us with the institutional acceptability which the Weatheralls' name, services and professionalism provides,” he said.

The move represents a significant upgrading of the Jersey firm's property services since it launched GPS three years ago and hired Barnes, a chartered surveyor, to lead the unit.

Peter MacFarlane, who is responsible for international business at Weatherall Green, said: “We anticipate rapid office growth and are aiming to be the biggest player in Jersey. We will be aggressively recruiting in order to fulfil this ambition.”