The biggest law firm acquisition deal in Wales has been confirmed with Hugh James acquiring MLM Cartwright.
The deal, the value of which has not been disclosed, will see Cardiff-based MLM Cartwright, which employs 40 including 10 partners, joining Hugh James’ existing business services and property teams – located at Hodge House in the centre of Cardiff.
The move, which takes effect from the end of this month, follows on from Hugh James’ acquisition of niche London-based commercial property law firm Claremont Richards last month.
Hugh James is a top 100 UK law firm.
Deal impact for Hugh James
The deal takes the number of Hugh James staff to 690, including 62 partners.
The enlarged law firm will operate under the Hugh James brand with a combined turnover of £38m. Hugh James also has an office in London.
MLM Cartwright currently provides a broad range of expert corporate, commercial and property legal services to a wide portfolio of clients who operate in a number of specialist sectors.
These clients include leading Welsh businesses such as SA Brain & Co, Coffee No.1 and the Celtic Manor Resort, as well as one of the world’s largest gaming companies, Novomatic.
In the telecoms and media sectors MLM Cartwright represents AP Wireless and MBNL, two of the most significant telecoms infrastructure businesses in the UK, as well as a number of the UK’s leading independent TV production companies.
Aled Walters, partner at MLM Cartwright, said: “Our partners are very proud of the firm we have built over the last fifteen years and are very excited about the significant opportunities that joining Hugh James brings.
“We considered a number of options as we looked at taking the firm forward but joining forces with Hugh James was the natural choice; allowing us to strengthen our offer while providing a dynamic and collaborative workplace where our lawyers and partners can continue to develop their practice and services.
“Hugh James has established itself as one of the premier commercial law firms in Wales while also expanding its portfolio in London and elsewhere in the UK.
“We look forward to contributing to the ongoing growth of the firm while continuing to provide our clients with the excellent service they have come to expect.”
Alun Jones, managing partner, said the deal is part of an acquisitive and organic growth strategy to confirm Hugh James as offering the “strongest commercial legal team in Wales with a growing city presence”.
“We are delighted to welcome the partners and staff of MLM Cartwright into Hugh James. It is an extremely well -regarded commercial firm with an impressive list of heavyweight clients in Wales and London.
“The deal reinforces our corporate, commercial, employment, private client and property offering in the Welsh market and beyond, following hot-on-the-heels of our London acquisition last month.
“The team brings a significant boost to the business as we look to grow all our services, and confirms our position as the go-to firm for businesses, organisations and deals.
“Importantly, there is a genuine cultural fit. Both firms have always aimed to offer expert advice through a personal and friendly service and this is very much the ethos we will retain as we welcome 40 additional, like-minded staff to the firm.”