Centaur & Barclay Property Group are a privately-owned property investment company specialising in various types of property management including commercial, multi-let industrial sites, office space, retail shops and residential.
Built over 40 years, their property portfolio totals in excess of £100 million capital value, covering 3 million square foot across the UK with over 700 tenants.
Operating from both a head office in Orpington and regional offices in Liverpool, Ayr and South Wales, they continue to grow their portfolio with the support of their in-house Property, Legal and Finance teams, who take care of all new deals and acquisitions.
"Importantly for us, Propman’s multi-company structure has enabled us to scale the size of the business without having to increase the number of staff, saving us a significant amount of time and money in running the business."Stephen Jones, Finance Director
The company was originally managing their portfolio using three separate systems, including Excel spreadsheets and a separate accounts package that linked to a basic bespoke property management package, this meant they were missing rent reviews and billing dates. Stephen Jones, their Finance Director, explains more:
“When I joined as their new Finance Director, I was tasked with sourcing a property management and accounting system that could bring our accounting in-house. We saw real commercial benefit in switching to one integrated system that could manage both the property and accounts, allowing us to consolidate information into one place electronically.”
Stephen and the team assessed the property management software market and reviewed three systems in total. They selected Propman as their chosen property management software as Stephen explains:
“We selected Propman for various reasons including it being non-modular with no additional costs to pay for extra functionality in the future. It’s fully integrated which means it can handle all 40 companies in one database and the team at Grosvenor Systems were friendly, approachable and knowledgeable within the marketplace so I felt confident that Propman would meet our company’s requirements.”
The Centaur team implemented Propman and utilised the full functionality of the system to improve their internal processes.
“The features and functionality that have provided us with the most benefit include:
1. Automated diary functionality – this ensures we never miss a critical date and importantly we’ve never missed a rent review
2. Keynotes – allows us to store all relevant property information in one place and electronic links provide immediate access to leases, photos and floor plans
3. Re-opening accounting periods – helpful for audit adjustment purposes and amending data without having to reverse the transaction
4. Automated procedures for posting journals for prepayment of income and expenditure
5. Quick and easy set-up of bank reconciliation routine
Separate from the accounting functionality, Centaur & Barclay utilise the flexibility of Propman’s reporting features to ensure they have a full view of their property portfolio, as Stephen explains:
“We utilise the user-defined Profit & Loss and Balance Sheet reports on a monthly basis to create our management accounts. The user-defined reports, such as the tenancy schedule report, ensure we know our passing rent at any time.
All of the above functionalities enable us to save a considerable amount of processing time and help us to manage and control cash much more closely than before.
Importantly for us, Propman’s multi-company structure has enabled us to scale the size of the business without having to increase the number of staff, saving us a significant amount of time and money in running the business.
Selecting Propman has allowed our business to grow, with the knowledge that we have all the property and accounting information stored in one place, and the peace of mind that we are no longer missing billing or rent payments.”