Led on the corporate front by Christian Farrow and for commercial work by Erica Westerman , following her arrival in August 2020 from Hugh James, Acuity Law has broad-ranging expertise for technology, energy, healthcare, financial services and life sciences clients across the gamut of M&A, corporate finance and ongoing commercial contract-related work. The firm is increasingly active on mandates outside of Wales, in part due to the growth of its London office; Paul Lowe recently advised publicly-held US technology company ScanSource in its multimillion-pound acquisition of a cloud distribution platform. Co-founder and chairman of the firm Stephen Berry still maintains a fairly active practice and has a strong track record across a range of corporate and corporate finance matters, particularly within the technology sector. As well as his continued focus on early stage technology and life sciences work, including advice to university spin-out companies, Phillip Pugh is also particularly active in the healthcare sector and has advised clients on the sale and purchase of dental businesses. Clients also continue to benefit from the firm’s in-house legal support subscription-based service - Acuity Counsel.
Corporate and commercial in Wales
Other key lawyers:
Newport Wafer Fab Limited
Sinclair Motor Group
CHOICE Care Group
The Sure Chill Company Limited
- Advised Newport Wafer Fab, a leading 200mm silicon chip processing facility, in a multimillion-pound refinancing deal, which involved the restructure of existing Welsh Government loans and a new asset finance facility from HSBC.
- Advising Capita Plc across a range of corporate and commercial matters, including on its acquisition program.
- Advised publicly-held US technology company ScanSource in its multimillion-pound acquisition of a cloud distribution platform after snapping up intY and its Cascade technology.
Led on the corporate front by the 'experienced and pragmatic' Robert Cherry and James Williams, Blake Morgan LLP handles a significant volume of transactional work (including a sizeable amount of private equity-related matters for management teams) and day-to-day general company law advice, including on corporate governance matters and compliance issues. Although the firm is active across a myriad industry sectors, it has built up a particularly strong track record handling work in the healthcare space, and has advised on 19 sales of domiciliary care, foster care and Special Educational Needs (SEN) schools businesses in the last three years. Richard Jones was recently promoted to partner, partially in recognition of his pivotal role in many of the firm's most significant private equity and venture capital mandates; he recently took the lead for Zip World and the management team in connection with the £45m management buyout backed by LDC and HSBC. Penri Desscan leads the firm's commercial offering and specialises in advising on long term, complex, high-value services and supplies contracts, including on major public procurement matters.
Robert Cherry and James Williams are experienced and pragmatic.
Capital Green Recycling Limited
Zip World Group
Check Safety First
Aquila Services Group Plc
Shareholder of Familyplacement.com Limited
Global Technology Group
BSN Social Care Limited
- Acting for the founders of Cardiff Parkway on two substantial funding rounds, including land acquisitions
- Acting for Zip World and its management team in connection with the £45m management buyout backed by LDC and HSBC.
- Acting for the shareholders of Check Safety First Limited in connection with the sale of the entire issued share capital of the company to Intertek Overseas Holdings Limited.
The 'dynamic and entrepreneurial' team at Capital Law Limited holds 'a strong position in the legal market in Wales', as a result of its ability to provide 'commercially focused advice' on M&A transactions involving both local targets and those based outside of the country. Under the guidance of the 'commercial and very experienced' Tom Kelleher, and also benefiting from the expertise of Duncan Macintosh - who brings 'excellent commerciality and contacts' on deals as a result of his longevity in private practice as well as his former work in-house at 3i - the team has developed a 'superb reputation in the private equity space', for funds, management teams and investee companies. Promoted to partner in November 2019, the 'very personable and pragmatic' Philip Barratt is also a pivotal member and takes the lead on many of the most significant private equity/venture capital deals handled by the firm. 'Very responsive, diligent and professional' associate Laura Spendiff has excellent ties with local SMEs, while recently promoted partner Maria Coggins leads on the commercial front and has expertise on commercial contracts, data protection, compliance and risk management.
Other key lawyers:
High quality, well respected, dynamic and entrepreneurial.
The firm has a strong position in the Welsh legal market and provides commercially-focused advice.
Tom Kelleher is a well respected, commercial and very experienced corporate lawyer, especially on private equity transactions.
Philip Barratt is a very personable, experienced transactional lawyer, who is capable of taking a commercial position and giving sensible and pragmatic advice.
Laura Spendiff is very responsive, diligent and professional.
Development Bank of Wales
Cardiff City Football Club
British Medical Association
TXO Systems Limited
ITC Global Security Limited
Veezu Holdings Limited
- Advised UK-based InsurTech entity, Zego, on its $42m Series B funding round.
- Advised Westbridge on its investment into multi-utility company APTUS Group Ltd.
- Advised Development Bank of Wales on its funding to enable the development of a new manufacturing plant for the mass production of next generation rechargeable lithium ion batteries.
With two partners based out of Cardiff and also able to draw upon expertise from across the firm's UK and international network, Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP excels at handling upper/mid-market M&A transactions, often without a Welsh nexus. Leveraging the firm's overarching subject matter industry expertise, the team is particularly focused on handling corporate/private equity transactions within the energy and financial services sectors. Paul Pugh excels at handling fintech M&A transactions and heads the overarching corporate team that also houses Michelle T Davies, whose combination of corporate nous and regulatory expertise has enabled her to develop a strong offering across the lifecycle of deals within the clean energy sector (including on acquisitions and exit strategies).
‘Very good quality work at reasonable rates compared with typical London practices.
Our partner, Paul Pugh, is very accessible and usually quick to respond. Also very helpful when it comes to finding pragmatic solutions.’
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Pollen Street Capital Limited
Currency Holdings Limited
Specialist Risk Investments Limited
Places for People Group Limited
Oodle Financial Services Limited
Rinkelberg Capital Limited
Stichting Beheer Blueberg
CGN Europe Energy SAS
- Advised Pensions Infrastructure Platform on its £50m acquisition of five onshore wind projects situated throughout the UK and Ireland from Scottish Equity Partners.
- Advised on the bolt on acquisition by Pollen Street Capital portfolio company, Specialist Risk Investments Limited, of The Underwriting Exchange Limited, London Ireland Market Exchange Limited (UK Co) and London Ireland Market Exchange Limited.
- Advised Honeycomb on its debt and equity investment in fintech company Jaja Finance as a part of Jaja’s acquisition of the Bank of Ireland’s credit card portfolio.
Led by Andrew Morris and Christopher Williams, on the corporate and commercial side, respectively, Geldards LLP's seven-partner team has the strength-in-depth to handle a tremendous volume and range of work for public and private sector entities. Morris is well-versed at handling transactional work for clients in heavily regulated sectors, including life sciences and gaming/gambling; he recently advised Novomatic on its $120m disposal of a large part of its UK gaming division to Inspired Gaming. Geraint Tilsley has successfully cultivated a strong private equity/venture capital offering in the local market for clients including BGF Investments, Development of Wales and LDC, and also has significant experience advising Welsh public sector bodies on governance and structuring matters.
Novomatic UK Limited
John Bean Technologies Corporation
Development Bank of Wales
Rutherford Health Plc
Warrington Borough Council
- Advised John Bean Technologies on its £220m acquisition of Proseal UK Limited (including its US and Australian subsidiaries).
- Advised Novomatic UK Limited on its $120m disposal of a large part of its UK gaming division to Inspired Gaming, including advising on agreements relating to IT infrastructure and IP licencing.
- Advised Rutherford Health Plc on a range of significant commercial, IP and technology agreements.
The 'strong team' at Hugh James 'radiates a fine commercial understanding' on behalf of both high-profile regional private and public sector clients (Welsh Rugby Union, S.A. Brain), as well as international entities with a pervasive Welsh presence (including Rockwool and Qioptiq). Although the firm is active across a myriad industry sectors, it is particularly accomplished at handling media and gaming-related transactions, an area where Aled Walters has specialist corporate and commercial expertise, gleaned not only from private practice but also by dint of his previous role as head of legal at a television network. Gerallt Jones heads up the firm’s corporate/M&A team and as well as advising on regional transactional matters, is also well-versed in handling mandates with a cross-border dimension having gained experience both in London and Hong Kong. Greg Williams 'is a pleasant guy who keeps a calm overview of lengthy and complicated UK law-based transaction documents', particularly as it relates to corporate and M&A matters in the healthcare sector.
The M&A team radiates a fine commercial understanding and supports us in reaching our goal which is to conclude the transaction on reasonable terms – not creating a Rolls Royce.
It is a strong team locally with good knowledge and experience.
Greg Williams is a pleasant guy who keeps a calm overview of lengthy and complicated UK law-based transaction documents.
Aled Walters runs a tight ship with his team managing a set of very different transaction contracts, guiding us to respond in an efficient manner during hectic times.
Welsh Rugby Union
DS Smith Plc
Celtic Manor Resort
Wales millennium Centre
TCS Jon Huxley
Origin Sounds Limited
S.A. Brain & Co Ltd
Oil 4 Wales
- Advised longstanding client Welsh Rugby Union on a joint venture with Rightacres Properties and Legal & General which will transform two of Cardiff’s most iconic buildings into Cardiff’s premier luxury hotel.
Leveraging strong ties with local businesses, as well as some clients from further afield, Berry Smith provides 'very proactive and responsive advice' to a primarily SME and owner-managed client roster. Under the guidance of 'very knowledgeable and practical' team head Andrew Bound, the firm has developed a particularly strong reputation advising life sciences and professional services entities engaged in corporate and commercial matters. Emma Borrington is the other partner within the team and is particularly skilled at handling corporate work within the financial services and manufacturing sectors. Senior associate Paul Evans is also recommended, and as part of his wide-ranging practice has developed a particular expertise advising GPs, dentists and other healthcare professionals.
Incredibly knowledgeable, friendly and approachable team.
The team is able to succinctly translate complex problems and provide legal wording to contracts, which is also understandable to lay persons.
The very knowledgeable and practical Andrew Bound is extremely good at advising on corporate structures and M&A.
Owen James is very responsive and pragmatic in his approach.
Yourgene Health Plc
BBI Solutions OEM Limited
Novarum DX Limited
National Procurement Service for Wales (NPS)
Spectrum Technologies Plc
Concepta Diagnostics Limited
Brecon Beacons National Park Authority
Monmouthshire Timber Supplies Limited
- Acted for AIM-listed company Yourgene Health Plc, the international molecular diagnostics group, on its £9.2m acquisition of Delta Diagnostics (UK) Limited (which trades as Elucigene).
- Acted as lead advisor to Mark Richmond and Stephen Thomas, former shareholders of Rhys Davies on their sale of the entire issued share capital to Cathay Investments 2 Limited for an undisclosed sum.
- Advised and reviewed aspects of tender documentation and terms and conditions for Brightwells Limited.
Since its establishment in 2013, Cardiff-based corporate and commercial boutique GREENAWAY SCOTT has rapidly gained market share, particularly on behalf of start-ups and early stage growth corporates, appreciative of the firm's 'collaborative, pragmatic and goal-oriented' service, as well as its flexibility on fees (which includes a willingness to utilise contingent fee arrangements). Founding partner Nigel Greenaway has 'excellent contacts in the local business community' and generates a significant amount of work for the firm as a result of his 'entrepreneurial approach'. Matthew Sutton is praised for his 'fantastic customer service', particularly for life sciences and tech sector start-ups seeking to grow their businesses through venture capital funding. The opening of a Pembrokeshire office in 2019 enables the firm to broaden the geographical scope of its business and to effectively service clients across west Wales.
The firm approaches its clients with complete understanding and empathy during the transaction process.
The firm displays a collaborative culture, and a pragmatic and goal-oriented service.
The firm understands what you, the client, wants to achieve, and works to make sure that you, the client, is prepared for a transaction.
The team is confident and capable enough not to have to prove that they are the cleverest or can score technical points – they concentrate on a successful deal.
Nigel Greenaway has excellent contacts in the local business community and is known for his entrepreneurial approach.
Matthew Sutton is a hugely experienced and smart chap.
Matthew Sutton provided a fantastic customer service. During corporate due diligence processes, all aspects are covered with detailed sale and purchase agreements.
Development Bank of Wales
Flexicare Medical Limited
- Advised on the management buyout of S3 Advertising.
- Advised the shareholders of SamePage Group on its disposal to Pollen Street Capital.
- Advised on a number of telecommunication deals in 2019 worth in excess of £20m.
Jointly headed by Michael Williams and Betsan Powell from the firm's Swansea headquarters, JCP Solicitors handles a significant volume of transactional and ongoing commercial work for a sizeable roster of SMEs and owner-managed businesses throughout south Wales. The team is particularly active in the healthcare sector, including advice on partnership/shareholder arrangements, and in relation to the sale and purchase of dental practices, pharmacies, opticians and care homes.
Gavin Griffiths Group
LBS Builders Merchants
- Advising the Energybuild group of companies on its refinancing with Noble Private Investments, involving negotiation of a £10m secured loan facility.
- Advised the management team of Brookglen Services Limited and MW Scaffolding Limited on the purchase of sister companies.
Led from the firm's Swansea headquarters by the 'experienced and commercial' William Barletta , Morgan LaRoche's 'knowledgeable and efficient' team has a strong reputation among south west Wales-based corporates, SMEs and owner-managed businesses. The scope of the team's work is broad and includes M&A and joint venture structuring, as well as corporate governance advice and shareholder agreement drafting. Although the firm is industry sector agnostic, it has developed particular areas of strength in relation to work within the healthcare, waste/recycling and energy industry verticals. Under the guidance of Welsh speaker Christopher Evans , the team has also successfully generated a thriving west Wales client base as a result of its growing presence out of its Carmarthen office.
Other key lawyers:
The team provides a knowledgeable, efficient and friendly service.
William Barletta is experienced and commercial.
Chris Evans is excellent to work with and all clients to whom we have referred him concur.
Culina group Limited
Hallmark Care Homes
Athena Care Homes
GDH (Holdings) Limited
AMP Clean Energy
Metro Property Investments
Santander (UK) Plc
National Westminster Bank Plc
Ospreys regional rugby club
Scarlets regional rugby club
Mid Wales Housing Association Limited
M&P Direct Limited
David Jenkins Limited
Owens (Road Services) Limited
Llanelec Precision Engineering Company Limited
Blackhills Caravan Sales Limited
Neath Port Talbot (Recycling) Limited
Carmarthenshire Recycling & Environmental Services Limited
EARS Fire Engineering Limited
- Advised EARS Fire Engineering Limited on its acquisition of Circum Limited.
- Acted for Carmarthenshire Recycling & Environmental Services Limited on its acquisition of ACR Environmental.
- Advised Weighbridge Referral Service Centre on the sale of shares to AIM listed, CVS Group.
Darwin Gray LLP
Headed by Stephen Thompson, Darwin Gray LLP's corporate and commercial team has a strong local following within south Wales for a diverse mix of SMEs, owner-managed businesses and larger corporates. As well as handling core corporate work for manufacturing, education, housing and construction clients, Thompson also has niche expertise in franchising matters, as well as handling distressed M&A.
Under the leadership of Sheraz Akram, Douglas-Jones Mercer provides a 'strong service' to local SMEs, owner-managed businesses and a number of larger international corporates, including Dawn Meats. The scope of corporate and commercial work is wide-ranging and encompasses M&A and joint venture transactions, as well as ongoing corporate housekeeping issues and advice on commercial contracts. Although the team is active across a broad swathe of industry sectors, it has developed particular expertise handling work within the healthcare sector and has been involved in numerous dental, veterinary and pharmacy acquisitions and disposals throughout England and Wales.
The firm provides a strong service.
Dawn Meats Group Unlimited
Principality Building Society
Calon Wen Organic Milk Cooperative
One Team Logic
Action for Children
Silver Fox Acquisitions
Lion Studios London
Records Setting Records
Gravells Motor Company
Belgrave Dental Centre
Imperial UK Property LLP
Clay Shaw Butler Accountants
Amman Healthcare Limited
- Represented One Team Logic in a multimillion- pound investment from Octopus Investments Limited.
- Represented Dawn Meats on the restructuring of its UK operations following a strategic partnership between it and Dunbia Group.
- Represented iCOM Works in a complicated restructure and demerger arrangement of its business operations.
Under the leadership of the 'very versatile and innovative' Theresa Grech , Ince has rapidly made strides in the local market since her arrival in January 2018 and the merger with Ince & Co at the end of 2018. Grech has a strong track record advising on M&A and joint venture mandates, and has developed a particular level of expertise over the years' acting for technology-based companies with significant IP-related issues.
Other key lawyers:
Theresa Grech is very versatile and innovative.
Natuzzi UK Retail Limited
Willis Construction (Wales) Limited
Tutis Energy Ltd
All Terrain Tyres Limited
Loading Systems Management Limited
Customised Sheet Metal Limited
Quantum Geotechnic Limited
DHM Consultancy Limited
- Advised Natuzzi UK Retail on the the establishment of a joint venture entity in the UK made between Natuzzi SpA and NTZ Retail Ltd to increase Natuzzi’s network of stores in the UK.
- Advised Willis Construction (Wales) Limited in relation to the partition demerger of the company to create two distinct operating structures.
- Advised Tutis Energy in relation to a contract dealing with the conversion of an existing Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) facility to an Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) facility.
Although it is best-known for its public sector personal injury/health and safety defence work, Dolmans has, over the years, effectively parlayed this experience to generate a growing amount of corporate and commercial work for local authorities, in particular. And while the team has limited exposure to work within the private sector M&A market, under the guidance of Justin Harris it does regularly act for public sector and not-for-profit entities, in relation to governance, administrative and commercial contract-related work.
Harrisons Solicitors LLP
Headed out of Welshpool by Paul Ingram , Harrisons Solicitors LLP provides an effective service across the gamut of corporate and commercial issues impacting clients throughout mid Wales. Representative work includes assisting local clients adopt and establish the most effective business structure to run their operations.
Wynnstay Group Plc
Charlies Stores Limited
WR Davies Motors Limited