19th March 2019

RSK Group Ltd, the UK’s leading integrated environmental, engineering and technical services business, has today announced its latest acquisition: Headland Archaeology, the UK’s leading, privately owned provider of heritage services to the development and construction sectors. The acquisition is the latest under RSK’s funding package from Ares Capital Europe (Ares) and a revolving credit facility provided by NatWest, secured in December 2018.

Headland Archaeology’s 170-strong team has an in-depth understanding of commercial archaeology with practical experience participating in major construction projects. From high-speed rail projects and wind farm construction through to housing developments and offshore cable laying, the company delivers against critical path and heritage responsibilities. Founded in 1996, Headland Archaeology is proud of the business it has built, giving archaeology an unprecedented vocational and commercial foundation. The company covers the whole of the UK from four regional offices in Luton, Hereford, Leeds and Edinburgh.

The acquisition comes when the archaeology and heritage sector has never been more in the spotlight, with a wave of large-scale infrastructure projects requiring archaeological input and expertise. Two of Headland Archaeology’s major recent projects include mitigation works on the Aberdeen bypass, UK, a 58-km road bypassing Aberdeen city centre and improving transport links across the north-east of Scotland, and the £1.5 billion A14 Cambridge to Huntingdon improvement scheme, one of the largest infrastructure projects in Europe.

With the addition of Headland Archaeology, the RSK Group becomes the largest, most profitable provider of archaeological services in the UK by turnover. We are offering comprehensive archaeology and heritage services to the increasing number of large infrastructure projects across the UK and abroad, even at the largest scale. RSK’s eleventh acquisition of the financial year 2018/2019 brings staff numbers up to 3000. The privately owned company now has over 100 offices globally and an annual turnover of more than £200 million.

RSK’s founder and chief executive officer, Dr Alan Ryder, said, “I am excited to welcome Headland Archaeology into RSK because, like us, their people and clients are at the core of what they are about. The success that the business has already seen is a testament to their leaders and all their employees. I am looking forward to what we can achieve together.”

Headland Archaeology’s current leadership team, including managing director Tim Holden, will join RSK and continue to drive the business forward. Headland Archaeology will become part of RSK’s environment and planning division under the direction of Sarah Mogford. The existing RSK archaeology and heritage business will merge with Headland Archaeology’s consultancy team.

“This is a very exciting time for Headland Archaeology”, added Tim Holden, managing director, Headland Archaeology. “We have differentiated ourselves in a market saturated by the not-for-profit sector to build a robust, commercial business that put clients’ needs first. Joining with RSK will further enhance the business, enable us to build on our strengths and provide our staff with new opportunities.”

Dow Schofield WattsTony Meakin advised RSK Group Ltd on the deal, with Nicola Merritt and Rob Parker from the Transaction Services team providing Due Diligence.

headland archaeology