The UK’s largest architecture studio Foster + Partners has entered into a “strategic partnership” with Hennick & Company, which sees the private investment firm become the studio’s largest shareholder.
The studio, which was founded by Pritzker Architecture Prize winner Norman Foster in 1967, announced the sale today.
Hennick & Company becomes largest shareholder
“Foster + Partners today announced that it has completed a strategic partnership with Hennick & Company, a private family investment firm founded by the Hennick family,” said Foster + Partners.
“For Foster + Partners, this new partnership is an important step in the evolution of the practice and will encourage further growth and innovation while maintaining its distinctive culture.”
Following the stock aquisition, Hennick & Company has become the firm’s largest shareholder, with Foster and the other long-term shareholders retaining the remaining shares.
“Going forward, Lord Norman Foster and his family will remain the practice’s largest shareholders after the Hennick family who acquired a significant interest as part of this transaction,” said the studio.
“The practice’s existing partners will all remain as long-term shareholders and retain the balance of the equity.”
Foster to remain executive chairman
Norman Foster, who will remain executive chairman of the studio, explained that the partnership will allow the studio to expand and take advantage of upcoming opportunities.
“Towards the end of last year, we started to explore long-term structures for the practice that would respond to the challenges and opportunities of growth and encourage the next generation of leadership and this partnership is the culmination of that process,” he said.
“We are delighted to be joining forces with the family trust of the Hennick’s, who share our values and the pursuit of excellence,” he continued.
“This evolution has the potential to expand the range and depth of our studio – particularly in the fields of sustainability, infrastructure, urbanisation and recycling.”
Foster + Partners was established by Norman and Wendy Foster in 1967 following the breakup of their previous studio Team 4.
The studio was one of the leading proponents of high-tech architecture, completing significant projects including the Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Headquarters in Hong Kong and the Sainsbury Centre art gallery, Stansted Airport and the Renault Distribution Centre in the UK.
It is currently the UK’s largest architecture studio, employing 1,500 people.
The studio has won the Stirling Prize – the UK’s most significant architecture prize – three times. It won for the Imperial War Museum in Duxford in 1998, 30 St Mary Axe skyscraper in 2004 and most recently for Bloomberg’s European HQ in 2018.
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