Vets’ practice looking for more growth after joining independent national group

Emersons Green Veterinary Surgery has joined the Independent Vetcare (IVC) network, made up of more than 700 practices across the UK.

IVC’s business model enables local practices to “be part of something bigger,” benefiting from greatly increased resources and investment while retaining their own distinct identity and team.

While IVC has taken ownership of Emersons Green Veterinary Surgery – which was bought by current owners Martin and Louise Brice in 2003 – its brand and staff can continue as before. However, the practice and its clients will now benefit from IVC’s investment and its group buying power, central support services and the network of sister practices.

The model reflects a strategy of aggregation for economies of scale and shared resources which is proving popular in many sectors in the UK, including legal and other professional services.

Under Martin and Louise’s stewardship, Emersons Green Veterinary Surgery has grown to a team of 20 vets, nurses and staff and been nominated for numerous Petplan awards, winning the Best Veterinary Practice award in 2012 while Martin landed the award for Best Veterinary Surgeon last year.

Martin has also featured on Sky News, BBC and ITV and is regularly on the radio commenting on news stories involving the veterinary sector.

Martin, who qualified in South Africa and subsequently worked in New Zealand, Shropshire and Birmingham, will continue at Emersons Green and intends to grow the business further with the benefit of fresh investment from IVC.

He said: “This is a fantastic opportunity for us to take Emersons Green Veterinary Surgery to the next level, benefiting from the excellent resources and expertise offered by IVC. It is an exciting time for all of us here and ultimately our clients will benefit from the additional investment in facilities, equipment and technology which this deal will bring.”

IVC CEO David Hillier added: “We are delighted that Martin and his team at Emersons Green are joining the IVC family. This is just the sort of successful, well run and well reputed local practice that fits into our model and complements our vision. We really look forward to working with our new Bristol partners and helping them to develop their strong offering even further.”

Martin and Louise Brice were advised by Taunton-based specialist veterinary accountants Moore Scarrott and Bristol and London solicitors Temple Bright.

Temple Bright corporate partner Paul Stone said: “It was a pleasure and a privilege to advise Martin and Louise on this deal, which is a significant milestone for the Emersons Green practice. The teams and their advisors worked collaboratively and it bodes well for a strong relationship into the future.”

Moore Scarrott associate partner Duncan Nicholas added: “Our warmest congratulations to Martin and Louise and everyone at Emersons Green on what looks to be a transformative deal for the surgery and its clients. We will be watching the progress of this exciting collaboration with great interest.”

This article appeared in the Bristol Business Newsletter on 10 May 2019.