A proposed merger was scrapped but negotiations have concluded with the Welsh company buying all of 422 Ltd's operations except the studio set-up in Cheshire and the Soho property licence. Barcud Derwen representatives declined to reveal financial details of the deal.
Two new regional facilities companies - 422 Manchester and 422 South - will be formed as a result. The new, totally autonomous, subsidiaries will be based at 422's existing Manchester and Bristol premises. 422's London arm is also included in the deal and a new smaller operation will be opened up north of Oxford Street.
422 Ltd, which still owns the studio operation, is currently in the hands of administrators.
422 Manchester managing director Martin Dixon told Broadcast: '422 and Barcud Derwen both share a strong belief in the importance of maintaining regional identity. This new structure enables us to focus exclusively on our growing client base and our development in the north-west market.'
422 South will operate mainly from Bristol under new managing director Craig Howarth. Company founder Andy Davies-Coward will remain as the company's chief creative officer and Peter Levy will be operations director, in charge of all day-to-day activities.
The deal to buy the two companies from the 422 Group was brokered by Bryn Roberts and John Gwynedd Jones - Barcud Derwen group managing director and finance director respectively. Barcud Derwen technical director Stephen Cowin advised on the equipment specification. Roberts said: 'This deal is part of our strategy to diversify both geographically and in the breadth of what we can offer clients.'
A board of directors will oversee the two new companies but Barcud Derwin insists that it will be distinctly 'hands off'. Barcud Derwen's other subsidiaries include Eclipse Creative, Men From Mars and B-DAG.