Corporate and commercial: Nottingham and Derby in East Midlands

Browne Jacobson LLP

Leveraging its large corporate finance team and network of offices throughout the UK, Browne Jacobson LLP 's 'experienced and commercial' team frequently advises international and domestic companies on acquisitions and disposals, and also acts for private equity firms on their investments and buy-outs. The team is also well-equipped to assist companies with restructurings, governance arrangements, GDPR compliance, IP contracts and a whole range of other commercial matters. In a recent highlight, Gavin Cummings, who specialises in buy-outs and international M&A, advised Bridge Farm Group on its sale to Sundial, a publicly listed Canadian company. Richard Cox focuses predominantly on corporate transactions with a cross-border element. Nigel Blackwell and Mark Hughes have a wealth of experience of private equity investments, including buy-outs, acquisitions and disposals. Paula Dumbill handles commercial agreements for large domestic and international clients, in addition to assisting public and private sector clients with major outsourcing projects. Commercial lawyer Selina Hinchcliffe specialises in IP licensing.


‘Excellent team with very capable lawyers who go the extra mile to make sure you are getting the help that you need.’

‘Excellent grasp of the commercial issues resulting in clear and strong advice.’

‘Gavin Cummings gives clear and confident advice, and is able to get to the real issues quickly and propose strong solutions.’

‘Richard Cox is such an excellent lawyer who has good technical skills and is pragmatic.’

Key clients

Pure Gym Limited

NorthEdge Capital (1 year)

Palatine Private Equity (1 year)

Apiary Capital Partners (1 year)

Addo Food Group Limited (relationship – 2 years)

Eurocell plc (relationship – 8 years)

Staffline Group plc (relationship – 19 years)

SDL Property Service Group Limited (relationship – 18 years)

Belvoir Lettings plc (relationship – 5 years)

Lloyds Development Capital (LDC) (relationship – 20 years))

Care Fertility Group (relationship – 7 years)

Triumph Motorcycles Limited

EPC United Kingdom PLC

The National Trust

The Doctors Laboratory Limited

Copley Scientific

Albumedix Limited

Branston Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised all the sellers (being the management team and NorthEdge) on the sale of the Bridge Farm group to Sundial UK Limited.
  • Advised Dalet on its acquisition of the Ooyala Flex Media Platform business from Ooyala, Inc.
  • Advised TDL on its reappointment as provider of pathology analytics and facilities services to a major NHS hospital in London, including advising on the procurement process and negotiating two service agreements.

Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP

Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP's Nottingham team regularly acts for clients in private equity and capital markets transactions, in addition to M&A and other corporate deals. Jon Cox-Brown specialises in advising financial services companies on major acquisitions and disposals. In one such recent matter, he advised Pembroke Investments Limited on its sale to Prepaid Financial Services for £281m. Ian Moore undertakes a mix of domestic and cross-border M&A, as well as private equity transactions, and has particular expertise in the technology sector. Matthew Hussey, Tom Goff and Elizabeth Blackwell are also recommended.

Practice head(s):

Jon Cox-Brown

Key clients

Experian plc

Capital One

Lloyds Development Capital

Capita plc


Sygnature Discovery Limited

Rolls-Royce Plc

Catalyst Developments Limited

Yusen Logistics

Pembroke Investments Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised The Boston Consulting Group Limited (BCG) on its acquisition of the entire issued share capital of award winning design consultancy AllofUs.
  • Advised Speedloan Finance Limited on the sale of its pawnbroking loan book and pledge portfolio to Harvey & Thompson Limited.
  • Advised on the disposal of over 60 MoneyShop stores to market leader, Harvey & Thompson Limited.

Freeths LLP

Freeths LLP's corporate and commercial team has a wide range of sector specialisms, including logistics, energy, retail and hospitality. It acts for large domestic and international clients in major transactions, including M&A, de-mergers and equity investments. On the commercial side, the firm primarily advises companies on joint venture agreements, procurement and major strategic projects. Karl Jansen has a wealth of experience advising clients on transactions running the full gamut, with a particular focus on UK mid-market businesses.  In a recent highlight, corporate partner John Heaphy advised fintech client DivideBuy on securing a £60m equity and debt investment from Souter Investments and Shawbrook and Paragon. David Lane and associate Mallory Coxe are also recommended.

Other key lawyers:

Mallory Coxe


‘Commercial, pragmatic and approachable.’

‘A direct and honest approach.’

‘A willingness to explain complex legal issues in a language that is easy to digest without being condescending.’


Key clients

Travis Perkins Plc



Euro Garages Limited

The Reflex Group Limited

Rematch Credit Ltd

The Bay Group Limited

Omar Park Homes

Harbour Healthcare Limited

Birlea Furniture Limited

HW Martin Limited

Motorpoint Plc

The Beckett Investment Management Group Limited

Shoby Investments Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Travis Perkins Plc on the separation aspects of its proposed sale of the company’s plumbing and heating division.
  • Advised The Reflex Group on the acquisition of the entire issued share capital of MPH Fulfilment Limited.
  • Advised Rematch Credit Limited (DivideBuy) in relation to an equity investment by Souter Investments and senior debt funding of Shawbrook and Paragon.

Shoosmiths LLP

With sector specialisms in food, hospitality, technology and insurance, Shoosmiths LLP advises international and domestic companies, PE firms and VC investors on a broad scope of transactions, including M&A and fundraising. Crispin Bridges Webb has a wealth of experience acting for corporates and private equity houses in cross-border transactions, including acquisitions, disposals and inward investments. Principal associate Gareth Cook handles the full gamut of corporate transactions.

Practice head(s):

Crispin Bridges Webb

Other key lawyers:

Gareth Cook


‘Very personable and always kept in contact. Also seemed to be very on top of things at all times.’

‘I dealt with Crispin who was just great to work with. Always listened provided guidance rather than telling us what to do.’

Key clients



Jensten Group

Tandem Group PLC

Oakfield Capital Partners

Blue Horizon

Octopus Ventures

United Carpets PLC

Edition Capital

Doctors Clinic Group

Work highlights

  • Advised Laundrapp on its complex all share merger with Zipjet and associated fundraising activities.
  • Advised Swiss based Blue Horizon on its investment in Human Foods.
  • Advised German Boewe Systec GmbH on its acquisition of Redledge.

Austin Moore & Partners LLP

Austin Moore & Partners LLP's 'proactive and knowledgeable' team predominantly acts for selling shareholders and acquirers in a diverse range of industries, including renewable energy,  pharmaceuticals and insurance. Founding partner Austin Moore has over 30 years of experience handling corporate transactions in the East Midlands. Associate Laura de Banke, who specialises in M&A, has played a central role in some of the firm's major recent highlights, including the sale of GEV Group Limited to Bridges Fund Management; this deal enabled the exit of previous funders Maven Capital.

Practice head(s):

Austin Moore

Other key lawyers:

Laura de Banke


‘The team are incredibly friendly and knowledgeable with an innate ability to explain complex detail in an manner that is easy to understand.’

‘Austin Moore provides practical and sensible advice that ensures matters progress quickly.’ 

‘Austin and his team were responsive and clearly explained all aspects in clear terms.’ 

Key clients

GEV Holdings Limited

Gigantic Tickets Limited

Lintott Environmental Technologies Limited

Mornington Partners Limited

Instarmac Group plc

Pharmaseal International Limited

North West Precision Limited

MAGroup Limited

Baker Metals Limited

Node International Limited

The Plan Group Limited

Turning Point

Buster + Punch Limited

JBMI Group Limited

Thrive Learning Limited

Friars 716 Limited

Agritec Systems Limited

Smiles of Wight Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised all shareholders of GEV Holdings Limited on the sale of entire issued share capital to Bridges Fund Management, including the exit of previous funders Maven Capital.
  • Advised shareholders of Gigantic Holdings Limited on the sale of 75% to My Ticket UK, a subsidiary of a German entertainment group DEAG AG.
  • Advised North West Precision Group on its sale to Arlington Group.

Flint Bishop LLP

Flint Bishop LLP's 'efficient and pragmatic' Derby-based practice advises a range of clients that includes SMEs, public companies and multinationals. In addition to advising on M&A and commercial arrangements, the team also has notable expertise in data protection, anti-bribery and anti-corruption. David Miller advises clients operating in various sectors on commercial contracts, data protection and internal audits. Martyn Brierley, who leads the corporate team, focuses on M&A and joint venture arrangements. Partner Rachel Bennett and senior associate William Bowler are also recommended.

Practice head(s):

Martyn Brierley; David Miller

Other key lawyers:

William Bowler


‘The team is accessible, provides quick responses to queries, and helps with complex issues.’ 

‘Martyn Brierley is an exceptional lawyer who understands our requirements and is always looking out for our end goal.’

Key clients

A1 Comms Limited

Accrofab Limited

Acorn Insurance

Altrad SA (French-owned large international group)

Branston Golf and Country Club Ltd

Britain Yearly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers)

Charles Pugh (Windscreens) (a member of the national ‘National Windscreens’ franchise)

Communications Software (Airline Systems) Limited

Electract Ltd

Donald Ward Limited

F W Thorpe plc

GL Events UK Limited (owned by French parent listed company)

Global Technology Limited t/a GTMaritime

Haven Insurance

Hellmann Worldwide Logistics Limited

Henry Boot Developments Limited, Henry Boot Construction Limited, Henry Boot plc

Ivygove Group

Marston’s plc

MPS Care Group Limited

National Westminster Bank plc

Peak Packaging Limited

Peveril Securities Limited

RELX (UK) Limited trading as LexisNexis

Sixt Rent A Car Limited

Smith Cooper LLP (accountants)

The Bowmer and Kirkland Group

The Carfulan Group

The Royal Bank of Scotland plc

The UK Carbon Graphite Group

Vaillant Group UK Limited

Work highlights

  • Advising the selling shareholders of Accrofab Limited on their disposal to Bromford Industries,  which is backed by US-based VC, Liberty Hall Capital.
  • Advised Henry Boot on its joint venture with the Greater Manchester Pension Fund/Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council, relating to the development of the Island Site in Manchester.
  • Advising a leading multi-channel marketing company on their eight-figure framework supply agreement with a global consumer brand.

Gateley Plc

Gateley Plc's Nottingham-based corporate and commercial team predominantly advises private equity firms on investments and management buy-outs. In addition to this workstream, the firm advises private companies on sales and acquisitions. Mark Rutherford assists owner-managed businesses and domestic companies with a wide variety of corporate transactions. Victoria Elliot and Beth Mather, who were both made partners in 2019,  have notable expertise in all types of private equity transactions. In a recent high-profile deal, the firm advised Equity Harvest Fund on the sale of CET Group Holdings Limited.

Practice head(s):

Mark Rutherford


‘Mark Rutherford is extremely thorough, reliable and prompt to come back with advice. I also find him invaluable as the adviser I can talk things through with. He is without doubt one of the leading corporate lawyers in the Midlands.’

‘Vicky Elliott is very good and very reliable.’

Key clients

United Tooling Solutions Limited

Connection Capital LLP

Carter Accommodation Group Limited


Troy (UK) Limited


Equip Outdoor Technologies (UK) Limited

Bridgeway Consulting Limited

Foresight Nottingham Fund

Bradgate Containers (Holdings) Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Connection Capital on its investment in Cargostore Worldwide Trading Limited.
  • Advised LDC on its management buy-out of Instinctif Partners Holdings Limited.
  • Advised LDC on its investment in Littlefish (UK) Limited

Geldards LLP

Geldards LLP's 'truly exceptional' team, which is based in Nottingham and Derby, is particularly well-regarded in the motor retail, healthcare, railway and IT industries. The firm predominantly advises clients on private equity investments, domestic and international acquisitions and disposals, corporate governance and commercial agreements. Michelle Craven-Faulkner has a wealth of experience negotiating and drafting commercial contracts, with particular strength in rail and renewable energy projects. Debra Martin is often instructed by companies in private equity transactions. Jamie Goldberg is sought after by clients in the sports industry, including well-known athletes, requiring assistance with commercial agreements. Associate Sarah Bailey is recommended for her expertise in corporate deals. Andrew Borkowski and David Tilly are other notable individuals.


‘We extremely value the flexibility and the team-based thinking of the individuals we worked with. Beyond and above we were impressed how well Geldards understood the specifics of our business and the commercial environment in which we are operating.’ 

‘The commercial team at Geldards Derby has significant in-house experience and this really shows.’

‘Michelle is always on hand to respond at lightning speed and her manner makes her a delight to deal with which together with her legal and business acumen means she handle our legal work with pragmatism and in a way which does not incur unnecessary cost.’

‘Jamie Goldberg is an exceptional solicitor, with broad knowledge and experience.’

Key clients

ACE Group International Limited

Acres Engineering Limited

Advanced Blast and Ballistic Systems Limited

Belcan International Limited

Camfaud Group Limited

Celebrity Motion Furniture Ltd

CIPS Corporate Services Limited

Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply

Commify UK Limited

Derby County Football Club

Derby Manufacturing UTC

Derby Quad Limited

Derbyshire Institute of Sport CIC

Development Bank of Wales PLC

Drive Motor Retail Limited

Ebenezer (Stone of Help) Ltd

EDF Tax Defence Limited

Effective Energy Group Limited

Elite KL Limited

EMB-Group Ltd

Work highlights

  • Advised Warrington Borough Council on the acquisition of a solar farm in York that is the UK’s largest and most technically advanced solar and battery storage project.
  • Advisd  on all of its commercial and regulatory requirements as a leading supplier of tickets to UK and European music and sports venues.
  • Advised Kiwa Holdings (UK) Limited on its acquisition of Acheta Consulting Limited.

Nelsons Solicitors Limited

Nelsons Solicitors Limited's varied client roster includes SMEs, owner-managed businesses and Plcs. It handles a high volume of sales and acquisitions across a wide range of different industries. Derby team lead David Kaplan acts for clients such as large aerospace businesses and small-medium healthcare operators in corporate transactions. Nottingham-based partner Harpreet Sandhu advises clients on all types of commercial agreements and risk assessments. The 'exceptionally supportive' Duncan Taylor (who is also based in Nottingham) had a very active year in 2019, completing over 14 transactions.


‘Duncan Taylor and of the team have provided us with outstanding professional expertise and legal services. Without exception, in all the numerous projects in which we have engaged their services over the years, we have always achieved a successful outcome.’

‘Duncan Taylor is a leading expert in his field and a man you can trust completely.’

Key clients

Badgemaster Limited

Ekkosense Limited

Cornshire Limited

Chromalloy Gas Turbine LLC

MHK Group AG

iCandy World Limited

Midland Lead Limited

Monarch Acoustics Limited

Navmii Holdings Limited

Nottingham Rugby Limited

Murphy & Son Limited

The Double R

Gas Container Services Limited

Cooper Parry

Power Electronic Measurements

Prime Life Limited

Rushcliffe Care Limited

HUUB Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Rayburn Tours Holdings Limited on its acquisition of Sports Tours Limited.
  • Advised Prime Life Limited on its acquisition of the entire issue share capital of Springhill Care Group Limited.
  • Advised Bombardier Transportation (Rolling Stock) UK Ltd on the disposal of Bombardier’s business and assets to Motherson Rolling Stock Systems GB Limited.

Shakespeare Martineau LLP

With a clear focus on the healthcare, life sciences and logistics industries, Shakespeare Martineau LLP advises clients on sales, acquisitions, and a broad range of commercial agreements. The firm has particularly strong expertise assisting clients with IP agreements and enforcement proceedings. Duncan James advises regional entrepreneurs and growing businesses on M&A, structuring and succession issues. Ed Wright is known for advising a diverse range of clients, including businesses and universities, on all areas of IP. Roger Harcourt leads the firm's dedicated healthcare group.

Practice head(s):

Duncan James; Ed Wright

Other key lawyers:

Roger Harcourt


‘The partners are well informed, accessible and reliable, providing a professional service to all clients in the market.’

‘Responses are timely and information provided is clear with the offer of further support if and when required.

‘They are very approachable, easy to talk to and reliable.’

Key clients

Future Health

BPR Medical

JTF Marketing

Common Wealth Games England

Cambridge Weight Plan

Whitworth Bros.


University of Nottingham

Vision Express

Work highlights

  • Advised Future Health on its standard re-seller agreement in relation to the provision of testing, processing, cryo-preservation and storage services in respect of stem cells derived from umbilical cord blood, donor blood and/or dental pulp.
  • Advised BPR Medical on contractually restructuring BPR’s oxygen demand valve and disposable product distribution and reseller networks, whilst also revising, as necessary, the template distribution and reseller agreements.
  • Advised Run D.M.C Investments Limited on the purchase but also advised on compliance with the financial conduct authority rules and compliance.


Noted for its particular investment in the private healthcare industry, Actons 'very professional' team focuses primarily on advising owner-managed businesses and SMEs on acquisitions and disposals. Simon Dakin continues to be very active in multimillion pound corporate transactions. The 'diligent and hardworking' Peter Flowerday has considerable expertise assisting clients with corporate and commercial deals.

Practice head(s):

Peter Flowerday

Other key lawyers:

Simon Dakin


‘Absolutely exceptional service levels, attention to detail and clarity on all legal advice.’

‘For me the communication and engagement has been stand out.’

‘Simon Dakin is a pleasure to work with and is readily available to handle all contractual matters with a very quick turnaround.’ 

‘I have worked with Peter Flowerday for many years and he has a detailed knowledge of the law coupled with the understanding of a wider business adviser.’

Key clients

EIDO Healthcare Ltd

Prima Solutions Ltd

Allied Irish Bank

Yorkshire Bank

Emma Property Management Ltd

Work highlights

  • Advised a confidential client on a multimillion share sale in the health and safety sector.
  • Advised a bank on its financing of a management buy-out with a complex corporate structure.
  • Advised a serial entrepreneur in the acquisition of a major holding in an established business, and advising the same entrepreneur on other transactions.

Smith Partnership

Focusing predominantly on the sports, technology and railway industries, Smith Partnership's 'pragmatic and proactive' Derby practice tends to act for buyers acquiring companies and assets. The firm also advises railway providers, football clubs and other clients on various contractual arrangements. Fraser Cunningham, who leads the firm's M&A practice, advises clients on commercial arrangements. He also plays an active role in local business developments as a board member of Marketing Derby.

Practice head(s):

Fraser Cunningham


‘This is the most proactive and professional firm of solicitors I have ever dealt with.’ 

‘The team are great! They are pragmatic and very clear in their explanations.’

‘The standout partner for me is Fraser Cunningham.’ 

Key clients

Derby County FC

Ascott Transport Limited

Recruitment Investments Limited

Ford & Stanley Holdings Limited

Yellow Rail Limited

Box Limited

Comex 2000 (UK) Limited

Champions (UK) PLC

Work highlights

  • Advised Ascott Transport Limited on a complex group restructuring, enabling the client to move its freehold properties to a separate entity in a tax efficient manner.
  • Advised the management team of Ford & Stanley Holdings Ltd on a complex MBO (management buy-out).
  • Negotiated a long term exclusive agreement on behalf of Spirit Medical Limited with a large French pharmaceutical company.