A CHESTER-BASED business is to be acquired for £59 million.

Ellis Whittam, one of the UK’s leading providers of outsourced employment law, HR and health and safety services, has been acquired by specialist services group Marlowe.

Founded in 2004 and located in Church Lane, Aldford, Ellis Whittam provides its services via a fixed-fee subscription model to over 3,300 organisations across the UK.

It is headquartered in Chester, with offices in Glasgow and London, and employs approximately 180 staff, more than half of whom are health and safety consultants, employment lawyers and HR compliance advisors.

Ellis Whittam’s subscription-based advisory services help employers across the UK remain compliant with evolving employment law and health and safety legislation.

The acquisition adds significant scale to Marlowe’s current offering of employment law, HR and health and safety services and offers synergies with Marlowe’s wider Health and Safety and Compliance division, particularly the Law At Work brand.

For the year ending August 2020, Ellis Whittam generated revenues of £16.1 million. The acquisition is subject to FCA consent and is expected to complete in November.

Alex Dacre, chief executive of Marlowe plc, said: “The acquisition of Ellis Whittam transforms our scale and capabilities in employment law, HR compliance and health and safety advisory and significantly advances our strategy to provide our clients with a comprehensive one-stop approach to their health and safety and regulatory compliance needs.

"The business, which delivers subscription-based consultancy services, supported by software, operates in an attractive and underserved market where we see significant growth opportunities.

"Ellis Whittam is a major step in strengthening our position as the UK leader in regulated safety and compliance services to organisations of all sizes. We are confident that this acquisition will generate attractive returns for Marlowe's shareholders."