17 August 2016 | Childcare & Education

Bright Horizons acquires Little Unicorn group of nurseries in Canary Wharf

Christie & Co, the specialist business property adviser has announced the sale of Canary Wharf’s Little Unicorn Day Nurseries Group to leading childcare provider Bright Horizons Family Solutions.

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Founded in 1998 by Kate Williamson, the independently-owned Little Unicorn Group currently consists of 4 settings with an effective operating capacity for around 350 children.

Nick Brown, Associate Director at Christie & Co handled the sale and said, “At the time Kate started her business, Canary Wharf was a very different place to the thriving area it is today. The development of a fledgling childcare business at that time was perceived to be a potential risk, particularly as Kate was of a relatively young age.

“However, the sheer determination of her and her family to succeed enabled them to not only open their first setting, but grow and evolve the business to where it is today, a thriving group of four premium childcare settings which also offer emergency childcare facilities and back up care.”

With an excellent reputation, premium fees and very high demand from parents and Wharf-based employers for places, the business quickly became a success. Bright Horizons was the natural choice for this seller.

Kate Williamson, the founder of Little Unicorn Group commented, “Whilst I am very sorry to be leaving the nurseries after 18 years, it is time to hand over to a very experienced and like minded company who will take the nurseries, practitioners, children and families into the future. I wish everyone well, I would also like to thank Nick Brown of Christie & Co for helping with a smooth transaction and to Bright Horizons for sharing my vision.”

James Tugendhat of Bright Horizons Family solutions added, “We’ve long admired Kate’s business and I’m delighted that with the exciting acquisition of Little Unicorn Nurseries, we are clearly positioned as the partner of choice for families seeking exceptional nursery care and employers selecting a back-up emergency care provider for their employees in and around Canary Wharf.”