Northern housebuilder plots regional expansion as part of plan to triple in size to 6,000 completions per annum

Avant homes has announced an expansion into the North West with which it plans to deliver 600 new homes a year. 

Expansion - Avant Homes has opened a North West office (Avant Homes CGI street scene shown)

Example of Avant Homes properties

The £667m-turnover business said it has opened an office in Eccles in Greater Manchester and agreed terms on two land deals to expand into the region. It expects to start development on the sites, which Avant declined to give details of, in the fourth quarter of this year.  

Mark Cook, who joined Avant from Persimmon last November as regional chairman for its Central, East Midlands and West Midlands regions, and will lead the North West Office, said: “Our new North West region will become a fully operational business delivering more than 600 units per annum in due course, creating new communities and employment opportunities for many. 

“We will be looking to acquire more land across the whole of the North West region to enable us to offer a range of homes covering all price points, as well as tenures, and are keen to develop key partnerships to deliver this strategy.” 

He added that this expansion would “play an important role in our medium term plan to construct and sell more than 6,000 new homes per annum across the North and Midlands”, which if achieved would represent a tripling of its current size. The housebuilder sold 1,921 homes in the 12 months to 30 April 2021.  Since being acquired in April 2021 [see below], the group has achieved 2,958 legal completions. 

The housebuilder wants to expand into Greater Manchester, Staffordshire, Cheshire, Merseyside and Lancashire and said it is in advanced negotiations on a number of deals. 

It already operates in eight regions, including Scotland, north east England, north Yorkshire and west Yorkshire.  

Cook was at Persimmon for 27 years in various senior roles, including in the North West, before joining his current firm. He is one of several Persimmon employees to have joined Avant following a reverse takeover of the firm by small Yorkshire housebuilder Berkeley DeVeer in 2021.

The take over was spearheaded by controversial ex-Persimmon chief executive Jeff Fairburn and was backed by fund manager Elliott Advisors. 

Another former Persimmon director Alan Hopwood joined Avant last year but left his job at the company at the start of 2023 after less than nine months in the job. 

Avant recently appointed Countryside’s former development director Mark Bray as a technical director to expand its business in the Midlands. 

Avants’ full accounts, published on Companies House on 17 February this year, for the 62 weeks to 7 July 2022 showed its revenue for the period was £667m.