Cushman & Wakefield has made its first step to create a Midlands office with the purchase of a small retail company.

Cushman has bought Birmingham-based Alston Nock, which is run by Robert Alston and Stephen Nock, and plans to create a full services firm by the autumn.

The company is expected to announce further appointments in the next few months. It hopes to secure a new office in central Birmingham by the summer.In the meantime, Alston and Nock will operate from their existing offices in Coles Hill.

Adrian Hill, chairman of regional offices and international board member at Cushman, said: ‘It is our aim to become the leading agent in Birmingham within the next five years.’

The company intends to follow its launch strategy into Manchester by pursuing a combination of organic growth and acquisitions. Alston and Nock set up their retail practice in 1989. They will join as salaried partners and become part of the 80-strong UK retail team, headed by John Strachan. Cushman & Wakefield also plans to increase the size of its Stockley Park office to be the first services firm to have a full service operation in the Thames Valley region.