Birketts advises Goddard Veterinary Group on sale to VetPartners

25 November 2021

Birketts has advised the largest family-owned veterinary group in the UK, Goddard Veterinary Group, on their sale to VetPartners.

James Allen and David Hollier (Corporate) led the Birketts team, with support from Gemma Goddard (Commercial Property) and Josie Beal (Employment).

Arthur Goddard established the Goddard Veterinary Group in 1952. Under the leadership of his eldest son Philip for the last 30 years, the group has expanded to become the largest family-owned veterinary group in the UK. The group has 44 branches and 3 hospitals in the south-east and Greater London, employing more than 100 vets in more than 450 members of staff.

VetPartners, founded in 2015 and based in York, has a network of 160 veterinary practices and nearly 600 sites nationwide, employing more than 6,000 staff overall. The business has diversified to include pet cremation, veterinary and equine nursing schools, laboratories and a dairy research centre, and expanded into mainland Europe in 2019, establishing practices in France and Italy.

Partner James Allen said: “We are delighted to support the Goddard Veterinary Group with this sale. Philip and the team were excellent clients and the group will go from strength to strength in their partnership with VetPartners. At Birketts we understand how important transactions such as this are – ensuring a business with the history of Goddard’s has a secure future with the right business.”

Speaking after the deal, Principal Philip Goddard said: “Fundamentally, VetPartners share our vision for the future and have the same principles guiding them to support their customers and staff. The Goddard’s board and I are in complete agreement that this is the right decision at the right time for the group. James and David were invaluable throughout this transaction, guiding us through the legal process with consideration and care; my sincere thanks to them and the whole team at Birketts. We were more than happy with the service provided and are pleased to recommend Birketts to anyone in the future.”