New cross border practice
Aberdein Considine secures first deal in England
Scottish law firm Aberdein Considine has unveiled its first expansion into England and Wales with the acquisition of an established legal business in Newcastle.
The firm – which trades in Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Perth and Stirling – has acquired Wallers Solicitors to help meet the growing need for lawyers who can act across multiple UK jurisdictions.
The deal gives Aberdein Considine its first foothold in the substantial English and Welsh legal markets and enables the immediate expansion of its corporate conveyancing, litigation and debt & asset recovery services south of the border.
The combined business, which will now trade under the Aberdein Considine brand, employs 380 staff and will have a total turnover of more than £22 million.
Former HL Interactive chief executive Matt Wightman becomes the firm’s first senior appointment in England.
Mr Wightman – an experienced debt and asset recovery specialist – joins as partner to spearhead the new English and Welsh operation, which will be based in Newcastle’s historic Cloth Market area.
Rob Aberdein UK partner in charge of lender services at Aberdein Considine, said the deal allows the firm to offer clients the convenience and security of using one firm across all of mainland Britain.
“We already act for some of the UK’s biggest lenders and this deal brings our customer, compliance and regulatory-focused debt & asset recovery and conveyancing services into the English and Welsh legal markets for the first time,” he said.
Aberdein Considine offers property, legal and financial services to private and commercial clients across Scotland. Its clients include global banking giants Royal Bank of Scotland, Lloyds Banking Group and Santander, as well high street retailers including Greggs and Rox.
The Wallers acquisition follows the partnership’s mergers with Stirling firm Muirhead Buchanan in 2014 and Glasgow lawyers A&S Ireland earlier this year.
Managing partner Jacqueline Law said it was a “hugely exciting” time for the firm. She said: “The opportunities in England are huge.”
Royal Bank of Scotland assisted in financing the latest deal – which the bank says is “good news” for the Scottish legal sector.
Senior relationship manager, Jamie Smith, said: “The Royal Bank of Scotland is delighted to have supported Aberdein Considine with its latest acquisition.
“This year has seen considerable growth for the business across Scotland. This entry into the north-east of England shows the positivity within the sector and will add to Aberdein Considine’s deservedly strong reputation within the financial and legal profession.
“This is good news for the Scottish market.”
Photo (left to right): Matt Wightman, Rob Aberdein and Joseph Bowie will lead Aberdein Considine’s expansion into England and Wales (contributed)