BHW Solicitors is one of the leading corporate firms in the region, with a number of experienced partners with expertise in M&A transactions, restructurings, secured lending work and employee ownership trust conversions. The group stands out for its expertise in the aerospace, private equity, manufacturing and insurance sectors. Ed Nurse leads the team and advises the firm's international insurer clients on complex restructuring issues, while Stephen McElhone has developed a niche in the mineral resource sector. Alex Clifton is experienced in numerous corporate issues, including management buyouts, demergers and strategic acquisitions.
Corporate and commercial: Elsewhere in East Midlands in East Midlands
Other key lawyers:
Stephen McElhone; Alex Clifton; Matt Worsnop
‘We have worked with BHW for a number of years now, based on our experiences of working with their Corporate and Commercial Department, they are a first choice legal firm when it comes to referring legal services to Company owners, and both the buyers and sellers of SME sized Companies in the UK. Their Corporate team are always responsive to communication, they are excellent at simplifying the process for Clients, reducing stress in the transaction, identifying and resolving issues before they become issues and ensuring that everything is in place so deals can meet target completion deadlines.’
‘Matt Worsnop (Corporate & Commercial Partner) is a highly personable, highly professional M&A lawyer. Matt is an excellent communicator who is willing to spend time understanding the client brief before proposing high quality solutions. He is a lawyer of high integrity and ethics and is excellent at building trust with our Clients and progressing deals. We enjoy working with Matt, he is always available and always responsive. He always makes time to explain things calmly and clearly and is the perfect appointment for any Business owner with a Corporate / Commercial legal services requirement.’
‘Ed Nurse has a very calm approach to problems and always contactable. His input in varied legal matters within our group is done with a great personal touch.’
‘Broad range of corporate and commercial experience and expertise. Balanced objective advice. Very responsive when required.’
‘Knowledge of our businesses and group. Attention to detail. Responsiveness. Commercially very astute.’
‘Matt Worsnop has a practical approach to resolving matters. I can always rely on Matt and his team to complete work efficiently and effectively. Matt is very effective at dealing with issues to get deals done. Matt will offer practical solutions to solve any problems arising.’
‘Ed Nurse has been very committed in getting the deal done, he has been a true business partner, always available also outside standard working hours. He has been a great coordinator of his team, overseeing the different topics and making sure everything was on track.’
Correlation Investments Limited
Lavendon Group Limited
Gardner Group Limited
Oadby Plastics Limited
BPX Group Limited
NatWest Bank Plc
Nationwide Platforms Limited
Money Thing Capital Limited
Animal Friends Insurance Services Limited
HSBC Bank Plc
KCT Holdings Limited
Quartz Holdings Limited
Home Pro Insurance Limited
Creative Software Solutions (Europe) Limited
Verdon Timber Group Limited
Marks Electrical Limited
Colson Castors Limited
Future 45 Limited
Staircraft Group Limited
Evergreens (UK) Limited
Delta Global Source Holdings Limited
Solutions Diverse Ltd
Sturrock and Robson Limited
Red Sands Insurance Company (Europe) Limited
AutoProtect Group Limited
Reach Engineering & Diving Services Ltd (REDS)
Beowulf Mining Plc
Meet & Engage Limited
- Advised the shareholders on the disposal of ARCC Communications to KN Circet.
- Advised Dare&Dare Limited on the disposal of Hay Hampers Limited to Moguntia Food Group.
- Advised the shareholder of Solutions Diverse Limited on the disposal to an MBO team.
HCR Hewitsons works closely with its offices in other regions to provide comprehensive services to its clients, many of which come from the manufacturing, technology, agricultural and motor industries. David Browne leads the team and advises large local clients on M&A transactions and group reorganisations. The banking group is led by Neil Harpham, who manages the firm's relationship with a number of leading banks. At associate level, Anne-Sophie Reynolds assists with many of the team's largest corporate transactions.
Other key lawyers:
Neil Harpham; Anne-Sophie Reynolds
‘I’ve worked with this firm for many years professionally and have used them personally to help and guide me through an exit strategy that has now concluded. I used them personally having experienced their service professionally and that was the main reason for engaging them on a personal basis. They give the impression of solidity and certainty without being ponderous or stuck in the past.’
‘David Browne has always provided excellent legal advice and has always been able to understand the commercial context.’
‘The team are always so quick to respond and that is what I rely upon. When information is needed it is always needed yesterday! So I am often grateful that the team are so accessible and I don’t have only one person I can contact when needed. They also have a lot of historic knowledge that I simply don’t have, so that can be invaluable at times.’
‘Neil Harpham is always available for us whenever we need him and has always been timeous, diligent and thorough in his approach.’
‘The team are so professional and dedicated and they deliver with such a personable style, friendly approach and a human touch. Anne-Sophie Reynolds has been a pleasure to work with. Her eagerness to help and respond to our demands (even when juggling holiday and lockdown with kids at home) is second to none. We completed a large re-financing in the last year and the speed of response and logical, clear and concise manner in which it was delivered made my life a lot easier, for which I am grateful.’
‘We have worked with the firm for a number of years and in that time they have taken the time to get to know and understand our business, which makes working with them so easy. It saves us so much time not having to repeat ourselves or go over information unnecessarily. They are always very clear about the fees appropriate for each case, and always give the most pragmatic and sensible advice.’
‘We have almost exclusively worked with Anne-Sophie Reynolds. She knows and understands our business and objectives, and just gets us. Not sure we could ever work with anyone else, she just makes working with HCR Hewitsons an easy decision.’
‘The company commercial team provide the quality of advice expected from a London firm. I have been very happy to put my faith in them for the last 11 years. If my regular partner is unavailable, the substitution has always been seamless. Nothing is too much for them.’
Anglotech Group Holdings Limited and Anglotech Solutions Limited
Perrys Motor Sales Limited
Medigold Health Consultancy Limited
Gambling.com Group plc
Fencor Packaging Group Limited
Intamac Systems Limited
C Walton Limited
The shareholders of C Walton Limited
Biogen (UK) Limited
- Advising the shareholders in C Walton Limited on the sale of their shares to Cox Automotive UK Limited.
- Advising Perrys Motor Sales Limited on the acquisition of a car dealership in Huddersfield.
- Acted for a major local farming family on the retirement of one of the son’s from the farming business.
Howes Percival LLP's corporate team has expanded significantly in recent years, and is acts for companies of varying sizes on M&A transactions, demergers and management buyouts. Jahid Ali leads the Leicester corporate team and specialises in VC investments and PE transactions. The Northampton office is home to senior partner Gerald Couldrake, while director Matthew Thompson advises on mid-market M&A transactions. Former head of corporate Daniel Banton departed in May 2021 to take up an in-house role.
Other key lawyers:
Gerald Couldrake; Matthew Thompson; Miles Barnes
‘Quality service well managed team with excellent communication and value for money.’
‘Matt Thompson – approachable and understands the business needs.’
‘The breadth of experience, knowledge, and network of the team.’
‘Miles Barnes is an excellent deal orientated commercial lawyer. He understands us, our business and what we are trying to achieve. Miles has assisted us with a number of projects and we are very pleased with the advice and service we have received.’
The shareholders of RIB Group Limited
Ataraxia 4 Ltd
Heath Crawford & Foster (Holdings) Limited
C.Brewer & Sons Limited
Euro Food Brands Limited
Shareholders of Metrol Springs
Shareholders of EBR Analytics
Longwall Venture Partners
Ataraxia Broking Ltd
The Property Investor Partnership Ltd
Motor Insurance Bureau
Strategic Resources Limited
- Acting for the sellers on the sale of a percentage of the share capital of RIB Group Limited and RIB Assured Group Limited.
- Acting for the sellers in respect of the sale to PIB Group Limited of the entire issued share capital of insurance broker holding company, Bartleet Enterprises Limited.
- Acting for Euro Food Brands on its strategic acquisition of the business and assets comprising the Food Doctor business from William Jackson Food Group.
From its office in Leicester, Shakespeare Martineau LLP works for a diverse range of SMEs and owner-managed businesses. The corporate practice is heavily involved in the healthcare and engineering sector and assists with funding work, M&A and reorganisations under the leadership of Roy Botterill. Martin Noble is head of the commercial team, which advises on supply agreements, data protection work and IP mandates, most notably in the retail sector. The group was further strengthened by the January 2021 arrival of Michael Squirrell from Wilkin Chapman LLP, adding to its expertise in advising IP-focused businesses and charities.
Roy Botterill; Martin Noble
Other key lawyers:
‘Martin Noble had very good skills. He is clear, concise, and helpful. I found that he could listen to the different arguments and then help to see the path through.’
‘Good understanding of our business & customer base, with easy to understand replies & never over complicate feedback & support requirements.’
‘Fantastic response times from Martin Noble & the team with friendly support to protect the business.’
‘I have worked with Roy Botterill on corporate transactions over the last few years – produces very high quality work and has come up with innovative solutions to difficult technical issues where required. He is also extremely approachable and friendly, while being technically and commercially very knowledgeable.’
Co-Fresh Snack Foods
Shield Engineering Group
Cambridge Weight Plan
- Advised Cofresh Snack Foods on its sale to Vibrant Foods, a company that specialises in ethnic foods.
- Supported Threadneedle Media with a management buyout of Square Mile and HEDGE magazines.
- Advised the existing shareholders of Amberstone Enterprises on the sale of shares to the management team.
Freeths LLP's corporate clients range from owner-manged businesses to large corporate and banks. As part of the firm's national network of offices, the Leicester group is often involved in cross-office transactions of significant size; in 2020, Keith Gilbert worked alongside partners from the Bristol, London and Nottingham offices on Carlsberg's £750m join venture with Marstons. Phil Baigent, who co-leads the team alongside Gilbert, is recommended for his work in the healthcare sector, where he advises care home operators, investors and funders.
Phil Baigent; Keith Gilbert
‘Freeths are a very strong regional corporate law practice with consistent quality across the corporate team.’
‘Keith Gilbert – a very friendly and decent guy. Knows his stuff with a good eye for detail. Will always do his best for you.’
‘Practical and pragmatic advice. Really approachable team who care.’
‘Phil Baigent is very calm and collected. Focuses on getting the deal done.’
‘The team is very client focused and also very pragmatic.’
‘Keith Gilbert. An outstanding lawyer who is flexible and a pleasure to work with. He explains difficult concepts clearly and will not ‘take points’ for the sake of it. He will always approach a task with the client’s interests to the fore.’
Advance Healthcare UK Limited
Anchor Hanover Group
ASAR Holdings Limited
BMI Healthcare Limited
Cambridge & Counties Bank Limited
Carlsberg Breweries A/S
Carlsberg UK Limited
Clydesdale Bank plc
Countrywide Care Homes
Frankham Bros Group Limited
Harrison Castings Limited
Integrated Doorset Solutions Limited
James Convenience Retail Limited
Lloyds Bank plc
Maria Mallaband Care Group Limited
MCR Systems Limited
Motor Parts Direct Limited
M P K Garages Limited
OEM – Automatic Limited
Regen Holdings Limited/Whites Recycling Limited
Sandstone Care Group
Santander UK plc
Sofidel UK Limited
Sprintquip Pty Ltd
Svenska Handelsbanken AB
Travis Perkins plc
Westward Energy Services Limited
- Advised Carlsberg on its £780m deal with Marston’s plc to form a new joint venture beer company in the UK, Carlsberg Marston’s Brewing Company.
- Advised OEM-Automatic Limited on the acquisition of the issued share capital of Zoedale Ltd from the Guest family.
- Advising the shareholders of Advance Healthcare UK Ltd in relation to the sale of the entire issued share capital to City and Country Healthcare Group Limited.
Nelsons Solicitors Limited's Leicester team is particularly strong in commercial transactions; Harpreet Sandhu, who splits his time across the firm's various East Midlands offices, leads the commercial and technology team which advises on outsourcings, product development, supply agreements and licensing work. On the corporate side, Chris Rees is praised by clients for his 'practical, innovative' approach to his work, which includes advising on private equity and investment transactions, corporate acquisitions and restructurings. Rees also has an extensive banking and finance practice, assisting with secured lending and asset finance matters.
Chris Rees; Harpreet Sandhu
Other key lawyers:
‘Nelsons has a very strong corporate law team. I generally work with Chris Rees (Partner) and Ziaur Rahman (Senior Associate). Chris is practical, innovative in his solutions and an excellent client facing partner who delivers reliably every time. Ziaur is an excellent technical lawyer as well as being friendly and approachable for clients. Together they make a tremendous team in terms of client delivery.’
Prime Life Limited
Nucleus Commercial Finance Limited
Nucleus Property Finance Limited
Nucleus Cash Flow Finance Limited
Nucleus Business Cash Advance Limited
Cambridge & Counties Bank Limited
4Syte Trade Finance Limited
4Syte Structured Finance Limited
Sills & Betteridge LLP provides a 'first-class service' to clients across the Lincolnshire area, which range from SMEs to national companies with bases in the region. The group has expertise in a number of sectors, and is particularly strong in the agri-business, energy, haulage and software engineering industries. James Conduit leads the practice and has expertise in corporate transactions in the insurance and education sectors, as well as issues relating to digital media. Andrew Payne, formerly the firm's senior partner, retired from the partnership in May 2020, though continues to practice as a consultant.
Other key lawyers:
Andrew Payne; Martin Walsh; Gary Phillips; Euan McLaughlin
‘We have received a first class service from the team at Sills & Betteridge, the thing that stood out most was the excellent communication, and responsiveness to the tasks and timeframe required. The team were able to communicate what is often complex legal prose in a manner that was clear and simple for those not trained in the niceties of legalese.’
‘We have been very pleased with the service provide by James Conduit regarding a recent asset purchase agreement. The communication regarding the work was superb. James understood the nature of the agreement and accurately produced the contract required. The attention to the deal, and communication with the other party’s solicitors facilitated an exchange on schedule and the process ran smoothly.’
‘James Conduit, Partner and our lead contact, is always available to initially discuss any requirements we have and then to either directly act for us or bring the relevant experienced team member to our case. James has taken the time to understand our business and fully understand the way our industry works. I class James as more than a business associate.’
‘The Sills team are always thorough, professional and responsive to the client circumstances. They operate with efficiency and work to deadlines set by the client.’
‘The individuals pay more than lip service to delivering on their promises. They stand out for the consistent quality in delivering the service to clients. They are reliable and innovative and provide solutions to specific client matters than resolve rather than frustrate the resolution of matters.’
‘As one of the pre-eminent firms in Lincolnshire I think the depth and quality of the Team and Individuals at Sills & Betteridge often get missed in the wider East Midlands market. Over the past fifteen months we have worked a lot closer with the firm and a number of its team. The depth of services is often understated, as is the quality of the individuals. The sensitivity as to costs makes Sills a natural partner to work with and one we will look to further grow our relationship with as time progresses.’
‘I have worked with Martin Walsh on a number of deals, he consistently delivers within time and budget, whilst ensuring that risk is properly managed regardless of the time involved. Martin puts clients first.’
Ashbury Labelling Limited
Ballet Makers Europe Limited
Battle Hayward and Bower Limited
Chandlers (Farm Machinery) Limited
Clydesdale Bank PLC
EPS Logistics Technology Limited
GH Byproducts (Derby) Limited
Hemswell Estates Limited
Lincoln College Group
Lincolnshire Football Association
NerG Ltd/ NERG Holdings Ltd
Omex Agriculture Limited
Sleeping Disorders Centre Group
Synergi Tech (IP) Limited
The Burdens Group
The Genius Group Solutions Limited
Turnbull & Co Limited
- Acted for Chandlers Farm Equipment on its acquisition of Lister Wilder’s Fendt, Massey Ferguson and Valtra ‘AGCO’ dealerships.
- Acted for the sellers of the Principle Healthcare Group on its sale to Euro Vital Pharma (EVP), an investee company of private equity firm Capiton.
- Advised local heat and power solutions provider NerG Ltd on a £2m combined heat and power project.
Following multiple new arrivals, Chattertons assists owner-managed businesses and SME with various matters. Adam Gilbert arrived from Else Solicitors LLP in October 2020 to take up the position of practice head; he has expertise in corporate transactions including M&A, MBOs, disposals and restructurings. James Dent, who joined from Wilson Browne, handles commercial contracts.
Other key lawyers:
‘We rely on Adam for support when agreeing contracts with customers and he is always available for advice and assistance, explains clearly without patronising. He has helped us update all of our terms and we feel secure as a result of this. Adam is always friendly and approachable and we know we can pick up the phone to him anytime.‘
Simpatica Group Limited
Abzorb Group Limited
Anemoi Marine Technologies Limited
Wonderland Agency Limited
- Advising shareholders on the sale of shares in JLF Moving Solutions Limited to Shift Online Limited.
Langleys Solicitors LLP
Luke Rees leads Langleys Solicitors LLP corporate team, which works with companies from the manufacturing, IT, financial services and engineering sectors on M&A deals and other corporate transactions. The group also works extensively with entrepreneurs and owner-manged businesses, handling investment rounds involving private equity, crowd funding and private investors. Though based in Lincoln, the group often collaborates with members of its York office.
Other key lawyers:
‘I deal with many of the departments and members of the Langleys Team on a wide array of legal issues. They know how myself and my family business operate and are able to tie together key issues in a succinct way. They have good communication internally and so often different departments are aware of what we are doing and therefore providing more efficient solutions.’
‘Peter Horner and Luke Rees handled our recent work. Legal matters were carefully thought out and explained in clear terms. Negotiations with the opposite side were therefore much more streamlined and coordinated as a result. Accessibility to discuss topics was always there, even out of office hours which is often critical in these deals. There is no doubt they will handle future work for us.’
‘I have always found the Langleys team to be very collaborative in their approach, working well internally between departments and integrating that with the client. The customer service and level of response received from the Langleys team is unparalleled from my experience with them. This level of customer service was unaffected by the lockdown, which considering that the Langleys team were working remotely makes their efforts even more impressive.’
Bottomley Distillers Limited
H Bauer Publishing Limited
ACM Global Laboratories Limited
Priory Federation of Academies
Encodian Solutions Limited
C F Social Work
Buxton Water Limited
- Advised Wolffkran Limited on the acquisition of Selenium Developments Limited.
- Advised the shareholders of C F Social Work on the disposal of the company to BCF Equity Partners.
- Advised KryptoKloud on the terms of an investment from Foresight Group through the MEIF fund.
Roythornes Solicitors' group is led by Martin Jinks and assists with management buyouts, demergers, corporate succession planning issues, shareholder agreements and data protection matters. Located in Lincolnshire, the group is frequently consulted by clients in the fresh produce industry, as well as those looking for assistance with agricultural issues. Jinks is supported by Mike Matthews and Lizzie Walters; the former specialises in regional M&A transactions, while the latter has developed a niche in corporate restructuring work.
Other key lawyers:
Lizzie Walters; Mike Matthews
‘The team is diverse and strong whether they are helping with an MBO, trade sale or private equity sale. They have a wide range of services and some significant sector expertise.’
‘Response times are very quick and no problem or challenge is too big or small. The people I have dealt at Roythornes go the extra mile to ensure you get a first class service. I had to conclude an MBO this time last year and without the help of Roythornes and in particular Mike Matthews it is unlikely the deal would have got over the line.’
‘With Mike’s calm, considered and professional approach to the transaction, he preserved the right balance in protecting our position for the future whilst ensuring we got the deal of the line.’
‘We have worked with several members of the Roythornes team to help our business with our merger and all the complexities that entails. The team are always very accessible and collaborative in their approach. Particularly guiding us through the complex paperwork and nuances of areas of law completely alien to us. Fees are always a huge consideration as we are an SME and have to be very careful with our budgets. The team were very good at agreeing fixed fees so we had the confidence that we would not have escalating costs to deal with.’
‘Lizzie Walters’ extensive knowledge, patience and clarity has made this process so much easier. It has not been without it’s difficulties, but her calm, measured approach has really helped in making us feel very supported. Lizzie broke down complex law speak for us so that we really understood what we were reading and did it all with very good humour. She was always able to come at a problem with a variety of solutions which all made sense to us and no question was deemed too trivial or silly. All the Directors of our company value her expertise highly.’
‘This team provides an efficient and effective service, understanding the needs of often demanding clients to get a deal done.’
‘The individuals we have worked with including the very impressive Mike Matthews are approachable, pragmatic and knowledgeable. Always content to go the extra mile, they understand the importance of effective client care. Complex corporate transactions become less so in their hands.’
The Food Heroes Marketing Limited
Clayson Country Homes Limited
- Advising The Food Heroes Marketing Limited on intellectual property matters and the establishment of a joint venture with external investors.
- Advising a fresh produce company on a group restructuring.
- Advising a family farming company on its demerger.
Wilkin Chapman LLP
Wilkin Chapman LLP advises on M&A, financing transactions and corporate reorganisations. Jointly led by Russell Eke and Ian Sherburn, the energy sector is one of the department's key area of activity; in 2020, the group advised on the acquisition of wind farms and arranged funding to facilitate the roll out of compressed natural gas filling stations. Michael Squirrell departed to join Shakespeare Martineau LLP in December 2020.
Russell Eke; Ian Sherburn
Other key lawyers:
‘The breadth of experience and team working approach. Lateral thinking and quick turnaround.’
‘Russell Eke and Limara Rickell are a fantastic advert for WC. They have a breadth of experience which is invaluable and I am always confident that every angle has been covered and executed in full. Furthermore their light demeanour always makes working together a pleasure.’
Unitas Wholesale Limited
CNG Fuels Limited
Total UK Limited
Mizkan Euro Limited
Yara UK Limited
Fastnet Fish limited
D.B. Ramsden & Company Limited
Lincolnshire Co-op Limited
Lincoln City Football Club
- Advised CNG Station Holdings Limited on an extension of its funding arrangements to £30m.
- Acted for Willoughby Farms on the acquisition of Whitfield Energy Limited which owns the Anaerobic Digestion Plant located on Willoughby Farm.
Wilson Browne Solicitors
Following its merger in 2019, Wilson Browne Solicitors has developed into a noteworthy name for corporate work in the East Midlands. The group, which has six offices across Leicestershire and Northamptonshire, is led from Corby by Duncan Crowther; his primary areas of practice encompass shareholder agreements, M&A transactions and equity investments. In Northampton, Andrew Kerr works with owner-managed businesses.
Other key lawyers:
‘Diverse range of people and backgrounds, with good knowledge and experience on which to pull. Fixed fee work and total clarity on billing. Diverse range of services offered, pretty much every aspect covered off, and they also have the ability to bring in additional expertise when/if required.’
‘The ability to approach senior people within the organisation, such as partner, and get a good and effective service directly from them.’
‘They have been a great help with the sale of our company, the depth of knowledge in the team is great. They are clear, easy to contact and straight forward to work with. Have complete faith and trust in what they do.’
‘Andrew Kerr, always quick to respond. Sound advice and easy to work with.’
‘I have worked with the Wilson Browne team for over 15 years on many corporate and commercial projects. They are responsive and come up with practical solutions to problems. Their legal documents are well drafted, clear and stand up to scrutiny.’
‘They are nearly always available to me and will respond to my calls and queries. Whilst I can offer them practical tax solutions, they give me legal advice, and together we can find workable solutions for clients. I have confidence referring my clients to them as they will get good customer service.’
National Education Union
Global Processing Services Limited
Dodson & Horrell Limited
Phoenix Fragrances Limited
The Gateway Group of Companies Limited
OCM Wealth Management Limited
Total Computers Networks Limited
Sweetstable Group Limited
C Butt Limited
George J Cox Limited
AES Control Systems Limited
Cooney Marine International Limited
Performance Finance Limited
Prestige and Homeseeker Park & Leisure Homes Limited
DC Battery Technology Limited
Pragmatiq Solutions Limited
The Yaboo Company Limited
EB Designs Limited
Global Health Tests Limited
247 Nutritionist Limited
Innocean Worldwide UK Limited
House of Goodness Limited
KCS Group Limited
New Chapter Villages Limited
- Advising EB Designs Limited on contractual arrangements with internationally recognised high street brands for the provision of retail space design and build services.
- Advising Festo Limited on various commercial issues.
- Advising Phoenix Fragrances Limited on corporate restructuring issues and intellectual property protection and registration work.