Corporate and commercial: Edinburgh and Glasgow in Scotland

Brodies LLP

Brodies LLP handles an impressive range of national and international deals from its offices in Edinburgh, Glasgow and Aberdeen. Acting for private and public companies, institutions, high-net-worth individuals and third sector clients, the firm advises on M&A, equity investments, joint ventures, corporate governance and business-critical commercial matters. Shuna Stirling heads the team with experience in a wide variety of sectors including food and drink, manufacturing, healthcare, leisure and hospitality, and real estate. William Mcintosh is recommended for private equity and venture capital matters; Julian Voge has over 30 years’ experience in corporate matters; David Lightbody is also recommended. David Gallagher joined in Glasgow from an in-house role at TC BioPharm.

Practice head(s):

Shuna Stirling

Testimonials

‘A good breadth of experience in relevant situations and solutions such that advice and support across the corporate and commercial spectrum is both accurate and efficient’.

‘David Lightbody deals with the majority of corporate support we get: he quickly developed good understanding of our business and has consistently provided accurate advice and support’.

‘Commerciality and pragmatic no nonsense approach’ 

‘Strengths include their impartial and professional conduct as well as their networking with Scotland and beyond’.

‘Strong expertise in the hotel sector with solid M&A credentials’.           

‘The team looking after us from Brodies, is sharp, energetic, extremely hard working, experienced and pragmatic’.

‘David Lightbody is a shining example of what qualities a young partner in a successful law firm should and must have’.

‘We have been delighted by the cohesion amongst departments, the quality of knowledge and speed of reaction and completion of tasks’.

‘The team were extremely responsive and straightforward to deal with’.

‘I was very impressed with every aspect of the service provided by Shuna Stirling and would recommend her to a colleague without hesitation’.  

Key clients

Lalique Group SA

D. C. Thomson

Promethan Investments

Simec Atlantis Energy Ltd

Abellio Group

Scottish Enterprise

Scottish Water Business Stream

Clyde Blowers Capital IM LLP

Scottish Equity Partners

Borr Drilling

Work highlights

  • Advised Lalique Group SA, listed on the Swiss stock exchange, on the strategic acquisition of The Glenturret Distillery.
  • Advised Northern Link Limited on the sale of 68% shareholding in The Scottish Salmon Company plc to Faroese farmer Bakkafrost for circa £356m.    
  • Acted for the shareholders of Paterson Arran Limited in the sale of the company to Burton’s Biscuits in a transaction funded by Burtons’ owner, the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan.

Burness Paull LLP

Burness Paull LLP has a wide-ranging corporate offering which includes significant experience in joint ventures, private equity, venture capital and equity capital markets. The team acts for an impressive roster of Scottish and UK clients on international deals, while also advising owner managed businesses and technology start-ups. Head of team Mark Ellis is recommended for high profile private equity deals, while Peter Lawson handles international M&A deals. Chris Gotts is also well-regarded in the market for his record on corporate and capital markets matters.

Practice head(s):

Mark Ellis

Testimonials

‘Very responsive, commercial attitude by the team – willing to explore multiple options. Very good at disseminating complex legal structuring points into commercial headlines for the deal team.’

‘Very high quality people who are focused on delivering for their clients and are able to focus on the important issues and get things done with minimum fuss.’

‘Mark Ellis and Chris Gotts are genuine subject matter experts who are able to keep abreast of all developments in the process and give guidance and input where it is needed. Incredibly patient and pragmatic and very good at managing transactions, and the various parties involved in a transaction, to a successful conclusion.’

‘Our experience with everyone we have worked with at the firm is consistent: Burness Paull is excellent at taking complex legal issues that have significant business and finance implications and developing pragmatic an straight-forward solutions. they are always very clear on what the practical solution is and not getting completely caught up in largely irrelevant technical issues.’

Key clients

Standard Life Aberdeen plc

James Fisher and Sons PLC

Scottish Enterprise

National Oilwell Group

ScottishPower

BlueGem Capital Partners

Walker Precision Engineering Group

i3 Energy plc

Kings Park Capital

STV plc

Work highlights

  • Advised AIM-listed Murgitroyd Group PLC in the acquisition of its entire issued share capital by Project Petra Bidco Limited.
  • Advised management shareholders in The Foundry on the sale by them and Hg Capital of the Foundry to Roper Technologies for £410m.
  • Advised mid-market private equity firm Bluegem Capital Partners on the sale of its stake in London’s iconic Liberty department store to a consortium led by Glendower Capital.

CMS

The corporate practice at CMS has a focus on cross-border inward investment work, handling major M&A, private equity and equity capital markets work. The practice, which also includes outsourcing and funds specialists, has a focus on the oil and gas sector and also generates mandates from the renewables, financial services, TMT, leisure and corporate real estate industries. Frank Fowlie heads the team; Graeme Bruce is adept at handling reorganisations and restructurings; Jack Letson handles venture capital transactions. Laura McIntosh, who joined as a partner from Dickson Minto WS in 2019, has brought a strong track record of work on high value M&A, investments and joint ventures.

Practice head(s):

Frank Fowlie

Testimonials

‘Graeme Bruce is always responsive’.

‘The quality of output is always excellent and the turnaround time is geared to our need’.

‘The Edinburgh team, lead by Wendy Colquhoun, is proactive, supportive, innovative and responsive’. 

‘They are our go-to team for our in-house capability, they act as a hugely supportive partner with top class legal and negotiation skills’. 

‘The team adds particular value around their understanding of industry expectations and standards in relation to funds and investments’.         

‘Wendy Colquhoun has an exceptional legal mind and is a determined and tenacious negotiator’.

‘After closing of the transaction CMS played again a very strong leading and coordinating role for the restructuring of the acquired investment structure’.

‘Graeme Bruce displayed a deep understanding of our requirements and drove the acquisition transaction hard’.

‘They have a great breadth of legal and contemporary industry insights and knowledge which they apply to the transactions and commercial arrangements they support us on’.        

‘They are always approachable and are happy to go the extra mile to help the client’.

Key clients

Sulzer UK

Clyde Blowers Capital

The Royal Bank of Scotland

Kennedy Wilson

Iqvia

Braid Group

University of Glasgow

Dunedin LLP

Smart Metering Systems plc

Baillie Gifford

Work highlights

  • Acted as lead sell-side adviser on the £320m sale of Alexander Dennis Limited to NFI Group Inc, the Toronto listed Canadian bus manufacturer.
  • Sale of Hydreco Hydraulics group to Duplomatic MS – acting for Clyde Blowers Capital S.à r.l. in the strategic sale of this international group. The transaction involved coordinating legal teams in Scotland, England, USA, Italy, India, Norway, Germany, China and Australia.
  • Acting for GreenPower on the acquisition of its JV partner, Ampere Equity Fund’s 50% share in Carraig Gheal Wind Farm Limited thereby increasing its ownership to 100% and advising on the funding of the acquisition.

Dickson Minto WS

Dickson Minto WS acts for a wide range of UK and global companies, private equity houses, family owned businesses and start-ups. The firm is experienced in cross-border corporate transactions with a particular focus on inbound investment into the UK market. Key partners include Colin MacNeill, Bruce Minto and Andrew Todd.

Testimonials

‘Dickson Minto are excellent for UK M&A’.

‘Andrew Todd is exceptional’.

Pinsent Masons LLP

Pinsent Masons LLP is noted for its work on large international corporate deals. The team, headed by Barry McCaig, has significant experience in the energy sector and also generates mandates in the financial services, tech, manufacturing, housebuilding and infrastructure industries. Alan Diamond is recommended for his expertise in equity capital markets, M&A and joint ventures; Rosalie Chadwick focuses on corporate finance; senior associate Kevin Beattie is another name to note.

Practice head(s):

Barry McCaig

Testimonials

‘High quality across the team with clear concise advice’.             

‘Barry McCaig is good at seeing the situation from the clients’ perspective’.

‘They have a strong team at all levels, particularly below partner level with Jenny Malcolm, legal director’. 

‘Knowledge is backed with strong practical advice that understands that business have decisions to make and don’t want lawyers who just try and tell you what you can’t do’

‘Every specialist area is covered and the teamwork is excellent’. 

‘Client communication is very well managed’. 

‘Jonathan Kirkwood is extremely thorough and very easy to deal with’.

‘Jennifer Malcolm cares about a client’s deal as much as the client does and she offers experience, commitment and capability’.

Key clients

Blue Water Energy LLP (“BWE”)

Ithaca Energy (UK) Limited

Idox

Total E&P UK Limited

The shareholders of Walker Holdings (Scotland) Limited

Solo Oil PLC

Scottish Equity Partners LLP

Railway Pension Investments (Railpen)

Cenkos

BayWa r.e. UK Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised on the $2bn acquisition by Ithaca of Chevron North Sea Limited.
  • Advised Induction Healthcare Group plc on its flotation on AIM in May 2019.
  • Advised on the Sale by Total of package of 10 oil and gas fields to Petrogas NEO – a mix of operated and non-operated assets.

Shepherd and Wedderburn

Shepherd and Wedderburn has recently secured new high profile mandates in the energy and natural resources, food and drink, and technology sectors. Its corporate team, which is spread across Aberdeen, Glasgow, Edinburgh and London, acts as lead adviser to Scottish, UK and overseas corporates, and also advises on the Scottish law aspects of deals for magic circle firms. George Frier heads the team; Stephen Trombala, who focuses on private equity, and Tom Swan, who is adept at handling restructuring and insolvency, are recommended. George Boyle retired and Danny Lee left the firm for Burges Salmon LLP.

Practice head(s):

George Frier

Testimonials

‘The corporate team gives good quality commercial advice.’

‘Tom Swann provides pragmatic and commercial advice time and time again. He is accessible, when timescales are tight and his calm, professional approach can cut through.’

‘The team demonstrated real agility and flexibility when presented with some unexpected problems which had to be resolved quickly and pragmatically. They all worked very hard often at short notice and over long hours. The result was a successfully completed transaction delivered on time and with zero disruption to shareholders.’

‘Paul Hally was always available and always on top of the brief. This was outstanding service from not just our lead partner but the firm overall’.

 

Key clients

FanDuel

Cairn Energy plc

BigBlu Broadband plc

Eider Reserve Power

Chivas Brothers Ltd/Pernod Ricard SA

Nucleus Financial Group plc

iomart plc

William Grant & Sons Ltd

University of Strathclyde

Falck Renewables

CYBG plc

ScottishPower

Nuclear Liabilities Fund Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Hillhouse Capital Management Limited on extensive diligence and acquisition advice on the purchase of the iconic Loch Lomond Distillery group from private equity vendors.
  • Advised DeltaDNA on its sale to Unity Software.
  • Advised on the transfer of the banking business of Virgin Money plc to Clydesdale Bank group plc and rebranding of the bank as Virgin Money.

Addleshaw Goddard

Addleshaw Goddard’s Scottish corporate offering includes expertise in M&A, capital markets and private equity. The practice generates mandates from the technology, fintech, energy, healthcare, real estate, and food and drink sectors. Head of team David Kirchin specialises in advising private equity sponsors and their portfolio companies. Andrew Ley is recommended for transactional work, fundraising and equity capital markets matters.

Practice head(s):

David Kirchin

Testimonials

‘Highly commercial team: proactive, responsive, high quality advice.’

‘David Kirchin is great to work with, providing an unflappable, commercial approach. He gets things done and guides his team, in which Laura Falls also  excels.’

‘Addleshaw had a solid understanding of my business which was of great support and comfort to me throughout each transaction.’

‘Murray Jack is by far the best lawyer I have engaged to work with during my +30 yrs in business. Always approachable at any time and even when busy with other clients’ work, he makes the time to respond as soon as he can.’

‘Knowledgeable, professional, responsive, especially in the face of tight deadlines.’

‘Anna Brown is our go-to partner within AG. In addition to doing her job to an exceptional professional standard, her wry sense of humour and ability to stay cool under pressure are great assets.’

 

Key clients

Brickability Group PLC

Waldorf Acquisition co. Limited

Shareholders of P2G.com Worldwide Limited

Shareholders of Commsworld Holdings Limited

Shareholders of Bertram Nursery Group Limited

Cairngorm Capital Partners LLP

Shareholders of Flow Hospitality Training Limited

Tumelo Limited

Frontier IP Group plc

BGF

Work highlights

  • Advising Brickability on its £150m admission to AIM and related £57m institutional placing.
  • Advised Waldorf on the acquisition of the entire share capital of Endeavour Energy UK Limited (EEUK).
  • Advising Frontier IP on its oversubscribed £4m placing on AIM by way of an accelerated book build process.

Dentons

Dentons’ corporate offering focuses on large domestic and international transactional mandates including public and private M&A, private equity, venture capital and capital markets work. The practice is noted for its expertise in the food and drink, financial services, industrial and retail sectors. Brian Moore heads the team and is supported by Derek McCombe, who is adept at handling corporate finance transactions and restructurings. Senior associate Owen McLennan is recommended for corporate transactional and funds work.

Practice head(s):

Brian Moore

Testimonials

‘Iain Sutherland provides excellent partner-led, personable, no-nonsense advice’.

‘A truly diverse team who all work in a highly collaborative manner to deliver a great client experience’.

‘They have an in-depth understanding of our business and its needs and can provide top quality advice on time and to budget every time’.

‘Response times are excellent and partner availability is second to none’.                                          

‘Their range of specialist skills is exceptional; from M&A and deal structuring, to employment, contracts and IP, they have a strength and depth which is excellent’.

‘The whole team is extremely personable and professional and will always go the extra mile to get a job over the line’.

‘Donald Smith has delivered outstanding service and really sets the bar in terms of pro-active client support’.

‘They are proactive and commercial in their approach’.

Key clients

Scottish Equity Partners

Clyde Blowers Capital

QUIZ plc

John Menzies plc

The Edrington Group Limited

Stagecoach Group plc

Edinburgh Woollen Mill Group

DexKo Global Inc.

Hansa Trust plc

SIMEC Atlantis Energy Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Charles Ritchie’s Testamentary Trust on a £120m cross-border M&A transaction.
  • Advised Edrington Group Limited on the sale of its Cutty Sark brand involving numerous bidders in multiple jurisdictions.
  • Advised Hansa Trust PLC on a cross-border capital markets redomiciliation transaction.

DLA Piper

DLA Piper’s Scottish corporate team advises international clients investing in Scotland, as well as domestic clients conducting cross-border transactions. The practice is noted for its experience in M&A, joint ventures, private equity, venture capital deals, and company restructurings and reorganisations. The international firm's Scotland managing partner Simon Rae leads the practice - he is highly regarded for his significant experience across sectors including energy, technology, and food and beverages.

Practice head(s):

Simon Rae

Other key lawyers:

Andrew Wardrop

Key clients

JP Morgan Asset Management International

Business Growth Fund

Energy Ventures

Environmental Energy Fund

Energy Growth Investors

First Reserve

Infrared Capital Partners

Investec Investments UK

Proprium Capital

Secure Trust Bank

Scottish Equity Partners

Royal Bank of Scotland

Prestwick Aviation Holdings

HV Systems

BrewDog PLC

Cimpress (Vistaprint)

Danaher Corporation

Element Group

Fortive Corporation

Heineken UK

Link Mobility

Lockheed Martin

John Menzies plc

Marsh & McLennan

Mavenir

Moneycorp

Moody’s

Omega Advisers Inc

Raytheon Systems

Smartsheet

Sony Corporation

TGS Nopec

Vue International Group

Westwood Global Energy

Wm Grant & Sons

Work highlights

  • Acting for longstanding Scotland-based client, Energy Ventures Private Equity, on the sale of Enpro Subsea to Hunting plc.
  • Advising Scotland-based BrewDog plc on the acquisition of Stone Brewing World Bistro and Gardens (and related facilities) in Berlin.
  • Represented global life sciences corporation Danaher on the $590m “spin out” of subsidiary company Envista Holdings Corporation.

Anderson Strathern

Anderson Strathern is well regarded for its record of work for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), as well as businesses in the healthcare, hotels and tourism, food and drink, and energy sectors. The team covers the full gamut of corporate work and is headed by Simon Brown, who acts for private, public and third sector clients. Euan Tripp joined as partner from Brodies LLP and Nicholas Howie was promoted to partner.

Practice head(s):

Simon Brown

Testimonials

‘Bruce Farquhar and Ewan Regan have a down to earth, pragmatic approach and demonstrate a genuine interest in the businesses they work with’.

‘They establish strong, supportive relationships and a working environment of mutual trust’. 

‘They support companies through the business transfer process and work hard to ensure all interests are addressed and aligned’.

‘Bruce Farquhar is supremely knowledgeable and instils confidence in clients’. 

‘Ewan Regan is a pleasure to work with, he makes the information accessible to non-legal people and is excellent at explaining complex legal jargon’.

‘Their wealth of experience and knowledge is invaluable and we always feel safe in the knowledge that the advice we are being given is correct’.

‘The individuals we have worked with have been extremely helpful, always available and extremely knowledgeable’.

‘Nicholas Howie is a superb corporate partner’. 

‘Level of personal service and attention is excellent’.

‘The team handles any queries and correspondences quickly and to detail’.

Key clients

Livos Group Ltd

Dentex Healthcare Group Ltd

Fairview International School (UK) Limited / Fairview Berhad

SuperControl Limited

Northwood 5s Limited

Safedem Limited

Devlin Holdings Limited

Shareholders of Reservoir Imaging Ltd

Exmos Ltd

Grossart Associates Ltd

Work highlights

  • Acted on behalf of Northwind 5s in all aspects of the £27m purchase of the assets of Goals Soccer Centres plc, including the investment with the funder (which included an institutional investor).
  • Acted for Malaysian company, Fairview Beaconhurst Limited / Fairview Berhad, an educational institute operating in the Far East, on the acquisition of the distressed assets of Beaconhurst Grange Ltd from administrators, which included a private school.
  • Acted for the target company and the two founders in the sale of the entire issued share capital in Grossart Associates Ltd by the founders to employee ownership.

Davidson Chalmers Stewart

In May 2019 Davidson Chalmers merged with Glasgow corporate boutique Kergan Stewart to form Davidson Chalmers Stewart. The firm is noted for its advice to SMEs and OMBs, and also acts for a number of large international companies in relation to multijurisdictional transactions, acting for clients in the healthcare, food and drink, energy and waste sectors, amongst others. Head of team Craig Stirling is recommended for his experience in M&A and private equity.

Practice head(s):

Craig Stirling

Testimonials

‘Davidson Chalmers Stewart are, in my experience, a fully professional outfit and at the same time very friendly and approachable. I have been very satisfied with the legal knowledge and attention to detail when dealing with legal contracts and issues.’

‘Davidson Chalmers Stewart are a quality Scottish law firm. Their lawyers are pragmatic deal-doers who get things done. They have a particular strength in property but are very good across general corporate and lending work. In terms of comparison, our feeling is that you get a partner-led approach for a very reasonable price and that partner-led ethos is at the key of their value proposition. They are nice people too.’

‘Quality practical advice from very experienced practitioners.’

‘They provide a very personal and flexible service that can be tailored to your needs on an ongoing basis as projects develop and/or new projects begin. They seem to have less rigidity than other firms and can therefore adapt accordingly and more easily to accommodate budget and time considerations.’

‘Craig Stirling has incredible legal knowledge. He is a great guy also and invests himself on a professional and customer-friendly level. In Craig’s absence I have used others in DCS who all gave great support.’

‘Craig Stirling’s legal knowledge and the way he explains things is a great quality.’

‘Craig Stirling is a no-fuss corporate lawyer who gets to the heart of the matter quickly and looks to find solutions to keep deal momentum and get things done. Nice guy.’

‘Stephen Smith was very knowledgeable in his field and able to offer additional advice through liaison with other colleagues to cover broad spectrums of corporate law. Stephen was able to manage the relationship in a friendly manner that switched to serious at appropriate times so that I always felt trust in what he was doing and the advice he was giving. He was an excellent communicator and never was frustrated by repeated or ‘silly’ questions.’

Key clients

Emerson Electric

Aortech International plc

Kelvin Capital Limited

My1login Limited

Palm Capital

Clyde Munro Dental Group

Full Circle Equity Partners

Box Media

Wavegarden

Shin-Etsu

Work highlights

  • Advised Palm Capital on the £27m sale of Selby Limited to Waterfront Holdings Limited.
  • Acted for Kelvin Capital on all of its equity investments in Scotland during the year including investments into biotech, antenna technology, and e-commerce companies.
  • Acting for Tartan Leisure on their development of a world leading inland, artificial surf wavegarden project at a disused quarry in West Lothian.

DWF

DWF’s corporate team is well regarded for its cross-border transactional, commercial and regulatory expertise. Private equity, joint ventures, compliance, and UK-wide acquisitions and disposals are key areas of focus for the practice. Head of team Paul Pignatelli leads on many of the firm’s high-profile national client relationships and is recommended for corporate governance matters.

Practice head(s):

Paul Pignatelli

Testimonials

‘They stand out from their competitors for their no-nonsense approach, focusing only on the issues that really matter’. 

‘The DWF corporate team are not only knowledgeable, but approachable’. 

‘The DWF team listen to the details of the given situation and frame their responses in relation to the problem using whichever team member is best placed to address the issues at hand’.  

‘The individuals are knowledgeable, experienced and good listeners’. 

‘Paul Pignatelli is very commercially focused, prepared to go the extra mile and will take the time to understand what is needed’.  

‘The individuals who have advised us are always accessible and available, sometimes at short notice and occasionally at personally unsociable hours, which all helps to ensure that challenging deadlines are met’.   

‘Their lawyers are personable, down to earth and know and understand the local business worlds of Glasgow and Edinburgh (and across Scotland)’.

‘They provide their clients with sound, practical and effective advice’.

Key clients

Boost (Bidco) Limited

Ipsum Group Limited

LDC

Boston Group Limited

Mattioli Woods plc

Custodian REIT Plc

Grahams the Family Dairy

Capita plc

Aliter Capital LLP

Ambassador Group

Edwin James Group

Element Plc

Suites Hotel Holding Limited

Work highlights

  • Acting for LDC (the private equity arm of Lloyds) and the other shareholders on the sale of CMS Windows to Maven Capital.
  • Advising the majority shareholders of The Partick Thistle Football Club Limited (“PTFC”) on the sale of around 55% of the shares of PTFC to Three Black Cats Limited, a company wholly owned by PTFC fan and Euromillions winner, Colin Weir (“Mr Weir”).
  • Advising Custodian REIT Plc on its acquisition of John Menzies Property 4 Limited.

Harper Macleod LLP

Harper Macleod LLP handles the full range of corporate M&A work, with a particular focus on the healthcare, automotive, food and drink and IT sectors. The team regularly handles cross-border mandates, acting for overseas investors and Scottish companies pursuing overseas investment or exit opportunities. The practice has noted experience in advising family owned businesses and OMBs, early-stage and high-growth businesses. Head of team Donald Munro is recommended alongside Paula Skinner, who specialises in advising entrepreneurial businesses. Fiona Neilson joined as partner from Ledingham Chalmers LLP.

Practice head(s):

Donald Munro

Testimonials

‘Jo Nisbet performed all aspects of her role with expertise, professionalism and humanity offering plenty support throughout the whole process’.

‘The team has a clear focus on clients’ interest’.

‘James MacGregor is a very experienced professional with a deep desire to fully understand the commercial drivers of his clients’ business’.

‘The team are very commercially focused and provide commercially valuable advice alongside technical legal advice’.

‘All are prepared to go the extra mile when required’.

‘Paula Skinner is an excellent source of advice and practical solutions’.

‘I trust Paula Skinner’s judgement and know that she genuinely cares about me and my business’. 

‘Prepared to do pro-bono work to help start-up businesses’. 

‘They genuinely care about your issues and bend over backwards to support you and your business’.

‘Partner led advice at all times, very knowledgeable and good value’. 

Key clients

Webhelp

Halfords

Paddle.com

Portman Healthcare

Clyde Group

Epidarex Capital

Kent Foods

Gael Force Group Limited

Tchibo Coffee Service

Firm of Scott-Moncrieff

Kingdom Technologies

Optical Express

Scottish EDGE

Rainbow Services (UK)

Work highlights

  • Advised Webhelp on the UK aspects of the sale of the Webhelp group by the US-based private equity firm, KKR, to Belgian-based investment holding company Groupe Bruxelles Lambert in a deal with a reported enterprise value of €2.4bn.
  • Advised FTSE listed business, Halfords, on its acquisition of, Scottish-based, McConechy’s Tyre Service Limited, a large independent garage chain in the UK.
  • Advised owner manager, Hugh McNally, in the sale of Irvine-based wind turbine installation business, Windhoist Group, to European fund manager, Star Capital.

Lindsays

The corporate team at Lindsays is well regarded for its advice on M&A, private equity investments and employee ownership issues, working for clients in the hospitality, retail, healthcare, engineering, education and fintech industries. Practice head David Wood has over 30 years’ experience in commercial, corporate and transactional work, and has strong knowledge of IP commercialisation, IT law and data protection. Douglas Roberts is also recommended.

Practice head(s):

David Wood

Testimonials

‘David Wood is not only excellent in his knowledge, but just as importantly to me, easy to get on with’.

‘Their advice over the years has helped me grow a small business into one very successful company’.

‘They always deal with you promptly and efficiently and are a joy to work with’.

‘They handled a very difficult and frustrating case with superb professionalism’.

‘Always felt they were going above and beyond and we could truly trust them to get the work done on time, and accurately’.

‘They gave sage advice when difficult options presented themselves and always communicated technical details in easy to understand terms’.

‘Douglas Roberts understood the personal stress created by the nature of our deal and what needed to be done for us’.

‘They seemed to work very well as a team, each knowing the bigger picture, but making sure every detail was covered and liaising with others in the firm when required’.

Key clients

P/F Bakkafrost

Castle Hotels Windermere Limited

Pacific Building Limited

Limpet Technology Limited / Pict Offshore Limited

Aitken Dott Limited

The IDCo Limited

Quorum Network Resources Limited

Mercia Fund Management Limited

Buzzbase Ltd

SIS Ventures Limited

Anderson Bell Christie Limited

Chapman Angling Limited

Archangels

University of St Andrews

Shot Scope Technologies Limited

Ian Hitchins and Sian Hitchins

Eric Campbell and Jennifer Campbell

Work highlights

  • Advised Bakkafrost on the acquisition of the controlling interest in the Scottish Salmon Company plc.
  • Advised Limpet Holdings on a corporate restructuring and advised Pict Offshore Limited in connection with an investment by Ørsted Ventures Europe A/S.
  • Advised the directors of Aitken Dott Limited (which operates The Scottish Gallery) on the sale of the shares in the Company to an employee ownership trust.

Macdonald Henderson

Macdonald Henderson is noted for its experience of advising on management buyouts, M&A and private equity deals, and is particularly experienced in cross-border transactions. David Beveridge heads the practice and is recommended for corporate finance, general corporate advisory work and investments.

Practice head(s):

David Beveridge

Other key lawyers:

Fraser Morrison; Laura McKnight

Testimonials

‘Commercial and efficient- a combination of broad experience and strong legal knowledge’.

‘David Beveridge is a well-connected and experienced operator’.

‘Really strong team that care about their clients, very solution-driven’. 

‘Fraser Morrison is an excellent lawyer who is practical, patient, knowledgeable and professional’.

‘MacDonald Henderson are a small team but they have such a range of knowledge and work so well together’. 

‘They have experience in dealing with small clients, from start-ups or university spin outs through to larger organisations on the SME spectrum’. 

‘The individuals I deal with, in particular Fraser Morrison and David Beveridge, are a delight to work with’. 

‘Key strengths are responsiveness and attention to detail’. 

Key clients

Strathmech Building Services

Executive Benefit Services

EasyRecruitUK.com

Provan Sports

Law At Work

Filtec Water Services

Community UK

JWF Process Solutions Ltd

Target Healthcare Group

John Paton Insurance Services

Pentland Material Supply Limited

HALO Scotland

The Gannet

Academy House Limited

Merchant City Distributors

Abacus Group

Advanced Perimeter Systems Limited

Pentland Precision Limited

INEX

Corporate Road Solutions 24:7 Limited

Clean Air Containment Services Limited

Awaken Intelligence

Spark & Rocket

Renfrewshire Electronics

Gean Developments

Thomsons Coffee

Ellis Mack

Enocell

Harbyn Consulting

University of Strathclyde

J Bruce Andrew

Damm Environmental

Doon Valley Pharmacy

Henderson Stone

Water Babies franchises

Bec Plastic

Finlay Scotland Limited

Old College Capital LP

Anacail Limited

Currie European Transport Group

Work highlights

  • Advising JWF Process Solutions Ltd, engineering specialists, in measurement and instrumentation products and services, with the acquisition of Manchester-based flow measurement specialist Stream Measurement Ltd.
  • Advising the shareholders of Law At Work in the sale of the company to Marlowe Group plc for £10.3m.
  • Acting for Halo Scotland, an urban regeneration initiative, in finalising its £14m funding package by Scottish Enterprise and Scottish Government for its first project in Kilmarnock.

MacRoberts LLP

MacRoberts LLP is well known in Scottish market for advising SMEs, OMBs, start-ups and emerging businesses, as well as international clients, large corporates and the Scottish government. The practice is adept at handling cross-border transactions and is often instructed as co-counsel in M&A deals by magic and silver circle firms, and US and international firms. Head of team Alan Kelly has over 20 years’ experience in M&A and corporate finance matters, and is noted for his experience in the food and drinks industry.

Practice head(s):

Alan Kelly

Testimonials

‘MacRoberts is a close knit focused team that really go the extra mile for clients. Always available and provide quality tailored advice on time. They have a keen interest in my business and quickly see the issues from my standpoint.’

‘Being given not only legal support, but also business support, really sets MacRoberts apart from other lawyers with whom we have worked with in the past.’

‘Innovative and broad thinking in providing solutions to complex problems. Fast and responsive.’

‘Michael Kelly is astute, commercial and available to us 24/7. He has become a trusted business adviser and has been instrumental in the successful growth and development of our business. He is brilliant lawyer, and really works hard to make a substantial contribution to our business.’

‘David Wylie  is commercially astute and able to provide elegant solutions to complex problems.’

‘Gary Baines is a pleasure to work with and to refer clients to. His dedication, attention to detail and overall assuredness sets him apart from other lawyers. He communicates in plain English and has a calm approach that puts clients at ease.’

Key clients

Clyde Munro

Greenwood Moreland Insurance Brokers

Together Energy Limited

Black & Lizars Limited

Dears Health Group

Idox plc

Johnston Press plc (now JPi Media Limited)

Speech Graphics

BAM Group Limited

Douglas Laing & Company

MBM Commercial

The corporate team at MBM Commercial specialises in acting for high-growth technology companies, advising all the way from development stage to exit. M&A, equity investments and venture capital fund formation are the practice’s main areas of expertise. Kenny Mumford heads the team, which was recently bolstered by the arrival of Bryan Shaw, who joined as partner from TLT.

Practice head(s):

Kenny Mumford

Other key lawyers:

Stuart Hendry; Tracey Ginn; Bryan Shaw

Key clients

Aurus Capital

Immense Simulations Ltd

Oregon Timber Frame Ltd

Money Dashboard Ltd

Invizius

Archangel Investors

Intuitus Limited

Archangel Investors

Novosound Ltd

Current Health Ltd

Humio Ltd

A2E Limited

Land Factor

Chilli Connect

Work highlights

  • Advised Aurus Ventures III in relation to its investment of $4m into Sunamp Limited.
  • Represented Oregon Timber Frame in its sale to Barratt Development.
  • Represented Invizuis Ltd in its pre-Series A funding.

Morton Fraser

Morton Fraser advises public sector and private clients, including SMEs and family business, on a range of corporate matters including succession planning. It has a niche expertise in crowdfunding and private fund limited partnership matters, and also advises higher education institutions on spin-outs. A further area of focus is investor clients, which the firm advises in relation to investment funds, groups and syndicates. Austin Flynn heads the team.

Practice head(s):

Austin Flynn

Testimonials

‘Morton Fraser is a large but independent Scottish firm with a very hands on approach which helps to drive matters forward effectively’.

‘Very good and in depth knowledge of the law, together with a strong appreciation of the commercial backdrop’.

‘Extremely quick and dedicated service’.

‘Great academic insight into the legal issues but tailored to deliver the right commercial result’.

‘Real interest in getting to understand your business’.

‘Iain Young is an outstanding partner – he works hard to understand the brief and engages with the other side’.          

‘Morton Fraser have a tremendously strong corporate team with an unrivalled knowledge of the market in Scotland and beyond.’

‘In Austin Flynn, Morton Fraser are blessed with an individual with a unique skillset’.

Key clients

The Scottish Hockey Union

MGB Biopharma Limited

Witherby Publishing Group

Clinspec Diagnostics Limited

Euro Hostels Limited

Scottish Mines Restoration Trust

Boundary Technologies Limited

Diageo

Schuh Limited

Mountain Optech Inc.

Work highlights

  • Advised the shareholders of Edinburgh-headquartered Headland Archaeology on its sale to RSK Environment Limited.
  • Advised the Eclipse Financial Holdings Limited shareholders on the FCA-approved sale of a majority stake to Staysure Group, with options over the balancing shareholding.
  • Advised Mountain Optech, Inc. on the English legal aspects of the $12m purchase of Brandywine Communications, a Californian corporation.

Shoosmiths

Shoosmiths advises on M&A, private equity investments, venture capital, fundraisings, restructurings, while also handling general transactional and governance matters. Alison Gilson, who heads the team, is well regarded for her expertise in the healthcare, transport and technology sectors.

Practice head(s):

Alison Gilson

Other key lawyers:

Jen Paton

Testimonials

‘Creative thinking to complex situations in finding solutions in negotiations’.

‘Great people from partners down to paralegals and support’.

‘Commercial mind-set, allied with a strong technical skillset’.

‘Fast and responsive’.

‘Very personable, clearly are able to build good client relationships, they think long rather than short term’.

‘Technically good at their role but understand when they need to bring in their specialists and know precisely who would have the technical skills but also who would be able to work well with the client’.    

‘For me there is no doubting their M&A expertise, however it is their unparalleled healthcare sector knowledge and their unrelenting drive for customer satisfaction that makes Shoosmiths stand out from the crowd’.

‘Practical problem solving solutions’.

Key clients

Extreme E Limited

Christopher Berry & Rachel Berry

Carewatch Care Services Limited

John Smith & Sons Group Limited

Engine B Limited

MV Commercial Limited

LeapFrog Investments Group Limited

Kortext Limited

Webrecruit Holdings Limited

Quorum Network Resources Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Extreme E Limited on its seed funding round and its much more significant Series A international funding round.
  • Advised Carewatch Care Services Limited on the sale of 22 branches of Carewatch’s domiciliary care business (across Scotland, England and Wales) to City and County Healthcare Limited.
  • Advised Kortext Limited on a fundraise with DMG Ventures (a wholly owned subsidiary of the Daily Mail & General Trust PLC) and Committed Capital.

Bellwether Green

Bellwether Green focuses on the technology and media, healthcare, early years education and financial services sectors. Areas of expertise include M&A, de-mergers and tax implementation matters. Head of team April Bingham advises accountancy firms on an ad hoc basis, drawing on her corporate expertise and professional practice knowledge.

Practice head(s):

April Bingham

Other key lawyers:

Euan Faulds

Testimonials

 ‘April Bingham is very knowledgeable but also very down to earth’

‘Excellent knowledge on corporate law’.

‘They were always available to answer any questions’.

‘The team is approachable and quick to respond to client needs’. 

‘They are very service-focused and have the ability to describe technical language in ways which clients understand’.     

‘Bellwether Green demonstrate huge amount of experience within all aspects of work undertaken for us and give us great confidence with their succinct and thorough reviews’.

‘In comparison to some other firms we finds them to be more responsive and straightforward to communicate with’.

‘The team are excellent they work together to deliver an excellent client service with exceptional expertise’.       

Key clients

Vertu Motors plc

Traveltek Group

DTS International

Good Full Stop Limited

Wooha Brewing Company

Hjalli Model

R & W Scott

Craigalan Group

Wooha Brewing Company

iMetafilm Limited

DSL Business Finance

Castlebay Investment Partners LLP

Work highlights

  • Advising the shareholders of International Fire Investigators and Consultants Limited on the sale of the entire share capital of the company to Jensen Hughes, a US based buyer.
  • Advising management team in the buyout of two of four founders in Good Full Stop Limited.
  • Advising iMetafilm Limited on two simultaneous investments into the company: a growth capital funding round by Kelvin Capital and Scottish Enterprise followed by a second investment by the GT4 Group Limited.

BTO Solicitors LLP

BTO Solicitors LLP is well regarded for its experience of sectors including leisure and licensing, property development and housebuilding, as well as  renewable energy. It acts for a range of businesses from sole traders to large international PLCs. Shareholder, partner and directors disputes are an area of focus for the practice. Gary Booth heads the team and is focuses on corporate and commercial matters with broad experience of cross-border transactions.

Practice head(s):

Gary Booth

Key clients

Mactaggart & Mickel

Crieff Hydro

Hallam Land

Peter Vardy

Scott Group Limited

Maven Capital Partners UK LLP

CRF Hydro Power Limited

Scottish Football Association

Angus Dundee Distillers plc

Query Click Limited

Work highlights

  • Acted for the Scottish FA in its acquisition of The National Stadium, Hampden Park.
  • Acted for Query Click Limited in relation to its fundraising.

Burges Salmon LLP

Burges Salmon LLP launched in Edinburgh in 2019 with a team including corporate finance partner Danny Lee, who joined from Shepherd and Wedderburn. Lee specialises in M&A, private equity and joint ventures. The team has a focus on clients in the energy sector, in particular renewables, as well as businesses in the food and drink, and life sciences industries.

Practice head(s):

Danny Lee

Other key lawyers:

Joanna Monaghan

Testimonials

‘Clear understanding of a range of different business sectors and clarity and professionalism when negotiating and concluding deals’.

‘Danny Lee has provided exceptional support in a number of areas of corporate advice and is always extremely professional and pragmatic’.

‘What makes the team here stand out is their calming influence in a negotiation’.

‘Danny Lee has a solid technical ability, valued experience, trusted opinion and willingness to be client-facing as well as deliver the work’. 

‘Ready access to the partner responsible for the work, supported by an efficient team at the right level, leading to a cost-effective service for the client’.

‘Good communication and prompt response to tasks and queries alike’.

‘Wide range of experience amongst the partners in the Edinburgh office enabling most requirements to be dealt with through that office but also has the support of wider network if required’.

Key clients

BSW Timber Limited

SIMEC Green Highland Renewables Limited

Helmerich & Payne Technologies UK Limited

Drinks21 Limited

Gordon Investments Limited

Cumulus Oncology Limited

Hamilton Hotel Partners

FirstGroup plc

Virgin Group

Jet Retail

William Grant & Sons

BayWa AG

Work highlights

  • Advising BSW Timber, the UK’s largest integrated forestry business, on its acquisition of independent forestry business, Maelor Forest Nurseries Ltd.
  • Acting for SIMEC Green Highland Renewables, part of the multinational SIMEC Energy group, in connection with certain corporate transactions that form part of the recent sale to Equitix.
  • Advising drink distributor and wholesaling business, Drinks21, in connection a third party equity investment from an undisclosed partner.

Gillespie Macandrew LLP

Gillespie Macandrew LLP’s corporate team focuses on sectors such as energy, commercial property and land and rural business, and is seeing an increase in workflow from the digital technology and food and drink industries. The team handles a range of work including M&A, corporate equity and debt finance, and restructuring. David Christopher Smith heads up the team and is experienced in corporate structuring matters for renewable energy companies and land-based development transactions.

Practice head(s):

David Christopher Smith

Testimonials

‘The team are proactive and practical and importantly are always contactable’. 

‘The service they provide is always of the highest quality and they have a tailored approach to clients’ needs’. 

‘They resource instructions appropriately and as a consequence their fee basis is always competitive’.     

‘Their knowledge of the local market, intricacies of the transaction and ability to deal with a difficult and challenging opposite side’.   

‘Professional, personable, knowledgeable and confident’.         

‘An approachable team who provide straightforward advice, with a good appreciation of the commercial realities of the market’.

Key clients

Ontrac Limited

Nutshell Software Limited

Johnson & Johnson Corporate Citizenship Trust

SSE plc

Gilson Gray

Gilson Gray handles a broad range of corporate matters, including contentious share buyback transactions, commercial contracts and cross-border transactions. The firm has a financial services subsidiary, and knowledge and experience of the buying and selling of IFA and financial advisory businesses. Derek Hamill heads the team and is recommended for corporate investment work.

Practice head(s):

Derek Hamill

Other key lawyers:

Andrew Fleetwood

Key clients

Brewdog PLC (also Brewdog Retail Ltd)

Delete Limited

Hunter Hayes LLP

Bray Controls (UK) Limited

Applus UK Ltd/Applus Services S.A.

Udrafter Limited

Turnkey Group Limited

Holmes Miller Limited

WSSO/Workstreme Global

CSN Care Group Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised CSN Care Group Limited on an MBO from Carewatch Ltd, including advice on the acquisition of a UK-wide group of care provision companies, novation or assignment of franchises, transfer of care contracts with local authorities, TSA arrangements and subsequent re-finance.
  • Following on from the acquisition of the business and assets of McGill Electrical Limited, advised the McGill group on the acquisition of Alliance Electrical Services Limited by way of share purchase.
  • Advised Udrafter Limited  on its first equity round in 2019, and then on a second round with Seedrs crowd-funding. This raised £300,000 in less than five weeks.

TLT

TLT’s corporate offering was bolstered by the arrival of legal director Kirsty Smith from DWF in 2019, a move which reunited her with former colleague Damien Bechelli. The Scottish corporate practice, which is led out of Glasgow by Bechelli, handles a mix of M&A and private equity transactions across Scotland and the UK. It is noted for its experience advising domestic and international PLCs, private equity and venture capital investment funds, OMBs, family businesses and entrepreneurs.

Practice head(s):

Damien Bechelli

Other key lawyers:

Kirsty Smith

Testimonials

‘Damien Bechelli has a unique capacity to make the client have real confidence in his advice and actions and to deliver what he promises.’

Key clients

McGill’s Bus Services Limited

Fuel Juice Bars (Holdings) Limited

Cinnamon Care Capital

TSquared Group

Scottish Grocers Federation

Intelligent Land Investment Group Plc

Arena Capital Partners

ILI Energy Storage Plc

E2 Energy Plc

BayWa r.e

Antibody Analytics

Work highlights

  • Advised Cinnamon Care on three separate sale transactions during 2019.
  • Advised BayWa on a corporate joint venture arrangement with a fellow multinational JV partner to acquire and construct ground mounted solar projects which in aggregate will exceed 500MWp in solar energy installed and see £100m+ invested in the projects created by the JV.
  • Advised the venture capital arm of one of the world’s largest private group of companies on its exit from a UK technology fast-growth company.

Turcan Connell

Turcan Connell’s corporate team is headed by Mike Kane, who focuses on advising entrepreneurs and family businesses. The firm is particularly experienced in exits including trade sales, management buyouts (MBOs), employee buyouts (EBOs) and vendor-initiated MBOs (VIMBOs). The team takes a multidisciplinary approach, drawing on strength from the wider firm's personal tax, employment, commercial property and litigation experts.

Practice head(s):

Mike Kane

Other key lawyers:

Jack Gardiner

Key clients

Macphie Limited

Smith Anderson Group Limited

ETB Technolgies Limited

Hoddam Construction

Innlaw Limited

NAAM holdings Limited

Rabbies Trail  Burners Limited

Lyon and Turnbull Limited

The Wee Hotel Company Limited

SV Realty Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Hoddam Construction on the management buyout which involved significant property issues.
  • Advised Colette Grant on her exit from the Scottish property management business, Grant Asset Management.
  • Advised Isle of Man Containerline on the structuring and execution of a complex employee buyout on the Isle of Man.

Weightmans LLP

Weightmans LLP’s Glasgow corporate offering mainly advises OMBs and SMEs on M&A, general corporate matters, governance, equity subscriptions and company law. Commercial contracts, GDPR and technology are other areas of expertise for the team. Corporate partner Claire McCracken is Glasgow office head; the Manchester-based Sarah Walton is head of service delivery for the firm's corporate, commercial and wills, trusts & estates teams.

Practice head(s):

Sarah Walton

Other key lawyers:

Claire McCracken; Nicola Gonnella

Key clients

Apadmi Limited

Mercarto Limited

CyberScout LLC

BJSS

Studio Messa PTY Limited

International Medical Press Limited

Surrey & Sussex Police

British Transport Police

Luxfer Mel Technologies

Nucleus Holdings Limited

ExposePro Limited

Rutland County Council

University of Newcastle

British Swimming

Real Life Options

McGill’s Bus Services Limited

Fairway Sports Capital Limited

Environmental Air Conditioning (Scotland) Limited

Edinburgh Marina Granton Harbour Limited

FGHJ Limited

Brewstore Limited

Mudataco Limited

SB Drug Discovery Limited

Optimus Accounting Limited

Work highlights

  • Represented Apadmi Limited on the review and negotiation of a high value software development services agreement with a Premiership football club and review and negotiation of various app development agreements with leading international brands.
  • Provides ongoing general corporate/commercial advice, contract reviews/negotiations and policy and governance support to International Medical Press Limited.
  • Advised and supported client BJSS on tender submission and review of Scottish Governments payments project alpha partner Contract.

Wright, Johnston & Mackenzie LLP

Wright, Johnston & Mackenzie LLP is noted for its track record of advising on private equity investments involving start-ups and spin-out companies, particularly in the technology sector. It also handles M&A in the energy, leisure and hospitality sectors. Other sector focuses include music, performing arts and healthcare, covering GP, dentist, optician, care home and veterinary clients. The firm also has in-house corporate tax expertise. Head of team Colin Millar focuses on corporate and commercial work including commercial contracts.

Practice head(s):

Colin Millar

Testimonials

‘Ken Long and Susan Hoyle stand out because they bring a long-standing knowledge of our business structure coupled with professional diplomacy aplenty’.

‘Very responsive and commercially orientated’.

‘Client-focused and results-orientated lawyers’.             

‘The team is very committed to meeting our needs and timescales’.

‘They understand us and what we require’.       

‘Ken Long is a very experienced corporate and commercial lawyer, his skills and knowledge ensure that we get the deal that we require’.

‘In-depth knowledge and very client focused’.  

‘Very personable and capable at the same time’.

Key clients

CR Smith Glaziers (Dunfermline) Limited

Canongate Books Ltd

Beam Suntory Group

Macfarlane Group PLC

The NWH Group Limited

Equity Gap Limited

Compound Semiconductor Technologies PLC

Holyrood Distillery Limited

Whyte and Mackay Group

Golden Charter Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised the Macfarlane Group on several acquisitions including Ecopac UK Limited, Leyland Packaging Company (Lancs) Limited and Armagrip Limited.
  • Advised Equity Gap Limited on several hi-tech start-up ventures over the course of 2019 and drafted, negotiated and finalised investment documentation.
  • Provided regular advice to Beam Suntory UK Limited throughout 2019 on distribution agreements, commercial contracts, property and other regulatory matters.