Shakespeares and Davenport Lyons call of merger talks
Shakespeares and Davenport Lyons called off their merger negotiations this week.
According to reports, Davenport Lyons will continue to look for a merger partner.
The firms are not saying what scuttled the negotiations, with Shakespeares CEO Paul Wilson merely noting: “We’re not presently in discussions with any law firm in the UK regarding mergers or takeovers.”
Shakespeares has publicly outlined its strategic aim to expand into a £50m mid-tier firm in 2014, and it’s plan to get there via acquisitions. In September 2013 the firm acquired Leicester-based Marrons and Coventry-based Newsome Vaughan and in May 2013 it merged with Leicester-based Harvey Ingram.
Davenport Lyons, for its part, has had a difficult year. The firm closed its film and TV group and reduced the size of its trainee cohort in November 2013, and saw its turnover drop from £24.5m to £21.9m in 2012/13. In the same period profit per equity partner dropped by 12.5 per cent to £197,000, following on from a 9% drop in PEP the previous year.