Move would see the firm chase soldiers for rent, and comes as part of acquisition-led growth strategy

Capita Symonds is planning to chase up soldiers for unpaid rent on military housing if it wins a strategic role as property manager for the Ministry of Defence estate.

The move comes as part of the firm’s wider strategy to grow by 50% over the next three years, which includes plans to acquire a top 10 UK consultant.

The Defence Infrastructure Organisation, which replaced Defence Estates at the beginning of this month, has said it is looking for a “strategic partner” to help cut costs from the running of its 240,000ha estate.

Jonathan Goring, managing director, said that Capita Symonds hopes to win contracts across government departments to bring in revenues more efficiently and has proposed that it take a more active stance on collecting rent owed by soldiers to the ministry.

The firm said it could use money from its balance sheet to help fund changes to the estate and would appoint a joint management board to oversee the 10-year “rationalisation” of the MoD’s property.

The bid is part of a strategy to take advantage of a market in “central government property outsourcing” as the state turns to private companies to help it deal with severe cuts in capital funding.

Goring said Capita Symonds would expand by 50% through organic growth and the acquisition of a top 10 UK consultant.

“Any acquisition would be made because they are better at what they do than us,” he said.

He added that an announcement would be made by the summer and the acquisition would be funded by cash rather than debt.

In addition to defence, Goring said Capita Symonds is also targeting the Ministry of Justice and the Home Office.

One option to save money would be to move some administrative functions of different departments, including Defence and Justice, under one roof into “shared service areas”.