Alsop rebranded as Sparch

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The Independent Online

The architectural firm founded by Will Alsop, the British designer behind the Peckham Library and Hotel du Department in Marseilles, is to be rebranded this week.

Archial, the listed architect that owns Alsop, will announce a name change at the Mipim property conference in Cannes in a move that sources expect will anger the former Stirling Prize winner. The division will now be called Alsop Sparch.

Mr Alsop left the practice last year, having sold the loss-making firm to Archial forerunner SMC in 2006, which initially rebranded it SMC Alsop. The chief executive, Chris Littlemore reverted to Alsop in 2008 to maintain its identity. But, Mr Littlemore has now decided to merge Alsop with Asia-based subsidiary Sparch to create an international trading name.

The Mipim conference is the commercial property and construction industries annual jamboree. Around 18,000 delegates are expected this year, down from a peak of 30,000 in 2008.

Archial's shares closed at 7p on Friday, flat on the start of the day's trading.