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Roberts Jackson gets £15m investment from NorthEdge Capital

Funds will be used to 'accelerate the growth of the business' 

25 July 2014

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By Manju Manglani, Editor (@ManjuManglani)

Private equity firm NorthEdge Capital has invested £15m in Cheshire-based legal practice Roberts Jackson, which has an alternative business structure.

The investment is intended to facilitate the "acceleration of growth and development" of the industrial diseases practice and to "open up new opportunities in the legal services sector", the PE firm has said.

Under the deal, several new directors have been appointed to Roberts Jackson's board, including members of NorthEdge Capital.

"The investment from NorthEdge will allow us to accelerate the growth of the business, capitalise on new opportunities within the market and hopefully provide many more clients with the very best advice," said Karen Jackson, CEO of Roberts Jackson.

"This investment will enable us to build upon our existing platform within the legal services sector."

Nick Townend joins the practice's board as finance director and Paul Hewitt as chair, alongside founders Karen Jackson, CEO, and Oliver Jackson, strategy director. Gladys Swaim-Rutter and Lorna Vanderkamp have been promoted to directors as part of the deal and are equity shareholders.

Grant Berry, managing partner at NorthEdge Capital, director Jon Pickering and investment manager Phil Frame led the deal. Berry and Pickering join the board as non-executive directors, while Frame joins as an observer.

"Recent changes to the ownership rules for legal practices and the implementation of the Jackson reforms have created significant growth and M&A opportunities for quality law firms such as Roberts Jackson," commented Paul Lupton, a partner at Deloitte, which provided corporate finance advice to Roberts Jackson.

"We have worked closely with the management team for the past 18 months, and now with a supportive investor in NorthEdge, we look forward to tracking the continued success of the business under Karen and her team."

DWF provided NorthEdge with legal advice, while management received legal advice from Pinsent Masons. Financial due diligence was completed by BDO and commercial due diligence by Credo. Weightmans carried out regulatory due diligence and Zebra LC completed work-in-progress due diligence. IT due diligence was carried out by Intuitus.

The deal is the seventh transaction completed by NorthEdge from its maiden fund, which closed at £225m in March 2013. The fund is aimed at lower mid-market buy-out and development capital transactions.

NorthEdge has said it is "looking to invest in like-minded businesses and management teams who have real ambition and the potential to shape global markets from the north of England".

The PE firm has invested more than £100m in northern businesses over the past 18 months.

 

 

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