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Birketts LLP

Work 01223 326600
Fax 01223 326629
Cambridge, Chelmsford, Ipswich, Norwich

James Allen

Work 01223 326779
Birketts LLP

Work Department

Corporate and commercial, Banking and finance




James joined Birketts in August 2012 as a Partner in our Corporate Finance Team having previously spent 11 years as a Partner at a leading Cambridge firm. He also has City experience.

James specialises in corporate finance, banking and insolvency. He has considerable experience in a variety of corporate finance transactions, including sales and purchases, venture capital, restructurings, and advising family-owned businesses.

He is qualified as an attorney in California and regularly advises on transactions with a cross-border element. James also delivers lectures to other lawyers and professionals on corporate finance and banking issues.

East Anglia: Corporate and commercial

Corporate and commercial: Cambridge

Within: Leading individuals

James Allen - Birketts LLP

Within: Corporate and commercial: Cambridge

Birketts LLP is ‘a strong regional firm that is well placed for SME, owner-managed and mid-market clients‘. One client remarks that it can ‘compete against any regional or national firm in the mid-market space, and is well positioned to manage cross-border deals through its network‘. The three Cambridge-based partners act for a diverse range of clients in sectors including technology, food and agriculture, transport and distribution, housebuilding and energy. James Allen leads the practice and is 'well prepared, pragmatic and straightforward; he remembers discussions and detail from the past'. Allen and associate Corinne Spencer, who are both described as ‘pragmatic and professional with a commercial attitude and a keen understanding of what is important and what is not', acted for German listed company Sygnis AG in its €10.8m acquisition of Innova Biosciences. Quentin Golder and experienced senior associate Nick Burt advised shareholders on the £24m sale of a 70% stake in Contamac Holdings to a subsidiary of Shanghai Haohai Biological Technology Co. Highlights for Adrian Seagers included acting for the owners of Ductclean (UK) Limited in its £10m sale to Marlowe plc. The practice also counts Ultrasoc Ltd, Veterinary Pathology Group and Scientific Digital Imaging Plc among its clients.

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East Anglia: Finance

Banking and finance

Within: Leading individuals

James Allen - Birketts LLP

Within: Banking and finance

The 'professional, competent and client-focused' practice at Birketts LLP is ‘excellent – very responsive and easy to deal with providing good advice from a reasoned viewpoint‘. One client highlights 'excellent response times, good commercial acumen and service that is reasonable in terms of price'. Mark Henry in Ispwich leads the practice, which counts Barclays Bank, HSBC Bank and Ipswich Building Society among its clients. Banking partner James Allen, property partner Chris Schwer, corporate partner Greg Allan are all key names in the practice. Senior associate Nick Burt is 'always available, good to deal with and commercially very sound'. Another client notes that he ‘impresses with his knowledge, speed of response and practical approach to getting the deal completed'. Legal director Alex Schaafsma's strengths are her 'speed of response, articulation of the impact of proposed changes, and her open, pragmatic and commercial approach'. A highlight for the firm was its work for borrower Time Group GB in a £42.2m loan transaction to finance acquisitions.

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Insolvency and corporate recovery

Within: Insolvency and corporate recovery

'To my mind, it is the premier firm in the East region', says a client of Birketts LLP. The firm is known for 'very good response times and it never steps outside of its technical capability; it has good strength in depth and represents good value for money for its great practical, yet commercial, advice'. The firm frequently handles high-value matters for IPs such as Price Bailey, McTear Williams & Wood, Ensors and RSM Recovery and Restructuring. Litigator and practice head Laurence Weeks in Cambridge, who is a council member of the Association of Business Recovery Professionals, is 'client-focused and practical'. For RSM, he handled the administration of F.H. Gilman, which had potential assets with a value of £12m. Corporate partner James Allen, who handles non-contentious matters, is 'a sound commercial lawyer with a loyal client following'. Greg Allan, who advised Price Bailey on the £2m administration of Enigma Limited, and litigator Matthew Atkins are also recommended.

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