Construction firm Leadbitter has teamed up with a French building company to buy out its owner.

The Abingdon-based firm and Bouygues Bâtiment International have combined to acquire Leadbitter from its Dutch owners Heijmans for an undisclosed sum.

The move was prompted by Heijmans bosses stating in 2009 that they were looking to concentrate on the Dutch market.

Bob Rendell, who will remain as chief executive at Leadbitter, said: “The resources and strength which will now be available to our group will place us in a very enviable position.

“I am confident we are now extremely well placed to capture further market share in a number of our key areas.”

Heijmans deputy chairman, Bert van der Els, added: “The management team has made a significant contribution to the success of the Heijmans Group during the period of our tenure and I am confident they are well placed to lead the Leadbitter Group to continued success.”

It is almost eight years since Heijmans took over Leadbitter in a multi-million pound deal.

Since then the company has seen its annual turnover more than triple to £337m, while its overall workforce has risen from 330 to almost 700, although the number of Abingdon employees has remained unchanged at 250.

The new management structure sees Bouygues owning a 51 per cent stake in the new company, while the Leadbitter management team control the remaining 49 per cent.

Leadbitter was founded in 1971 by Frederick Rendell. For 14 years the firm worked mostly for colleges in Oxford.

Mr Rendell's son Bob expanded the business from a £300,000 annual turnover to its position as a leading regional building firm.

Olivier-Marie Racine, chief executive and chairman of Bouygues Bâtiment International, said: "This agreement in conjunction with the Leadbitter Group management team is an excellent illustration of our development strategy in the most buoyant regions of England."