Lambert Smith Hampton, the commercial arm of Countrywide, is to be put up for sale.
LSH is one of Britain's oldest and most respected commercial properties names, founded in 1773 but only a part of Countrywide since 2013.
Commercial property publication Estates Gazette, which broke the news this afternoon, says LSH is being sold through Deloitte.
Last month we reported that Countrywide told shareholders that it suffered a 29 per cent slump in London exchanges in the third quarter of the year compared to the same period of 2015, with a one per cent dip in exchanges across the rest of the country. It blamed high stamp duty and Brexit uncertainty.
“The slowdown in activity across the market in Q3 is clearly evident in the closing pipe-lines for our [out of London] Retail and London businesses, which at the end of September were down 16 per cent and 26 per cent respectively compared to a year earlier” said Countrywide at the time.
It also warned that worse was on its way for 2017.
EG says it is understood that Countrywide wants to strike a quick deal over LSH next month, with the most likely outcome a sale to private equity rather than to a competitor.
“LSH set out on an aggressive expansion plan when it was bought by Countrywide and has since bought six businesses, including Tushingham Moore, BTWShiells, ES Group and Douglas Newman” says Estates Gazette.
Earlier this month Countrywide was dropped from the FTSE-250.
Here is the full story on Estates Gazette.