Engineering consultants NRM and Jan Bobrowski and Partners this week merged to improve their performance in a tough market

NRM was created in 1979 and specialises in high-rise residential and commercial schemes. Bobrowski is a sports, leisure and bridge specialist.

The merged company, called NRM Bobrowski, will have a better chance of winning contracts when competing with large consultants such as Arup and Mott MacDonald.

The company will operate from NRM’s offices in central London and Southampton, and Bobrowski’s base in Twickenham, west London.

The two companies were first introduced by Stuart Holdsworth, the merged group’s design director who had worked for both.

Ritchie Clapson, formerly managing director at NRM and now managing director of the merged company, stressed that although it would consider further mergers and acquisitions, the intention was not to become a giant.

Izabella Bobrowski-Evans, daughter of founder Jan and responsible for business development and marketing, said: “The important factor here is that there is a synergy. We have something that we can take to the market that isn’t already there.”

She said: “We realised we had to update our ideas as the market changed. We always had to compete with the big boys and we wanted to create a more level playing field.”

The company has 35 staff and Clapson said that if it doubles that number it could still operate a hands-on business, “but we are not looking to be 5000 or even 500”.

Projects at the moment range in value from £80,000-80m, and the company is in talks about a £200m scheme.

Some of the high-profile sports and leisure projects at Jan Bobrowski and Partners have included the Calgary Olympic Saddledome, the Millennium Grandstand at Newmarket racecourse and the current refurbishment works at Doncaster racecourse in south Yorkshire.

Bobrowski also completed the award-winning South Quay footbridge at London’s Docklands.

NRM’s projects include the Riverbank Park Plaza hotel, which is currently under construction at Albert Embankment in London, and the Excel hotel at Royal Victoria Docks, also in London. It also created the world’s biggest tent for the millennium celebrations at Don Valley Stadium.

The board at NRM Bobrowski will comprise chairman Peter Roche, a founding director of NRM, Clapson, Holdsworth, Brian White, Patrick Fisher and John Cutlack.