Hudgell Solicitors managing director Neil Hudgell says the firm is ‘open for business’ once again and actively seeking further acquisition opportunities having sensed another ‘significant market exodus’ is around the corner.
The firm, established by Mr Hudgell in 1997, now operates from bases in Hull, London, Leeds and Manchester, representing thousands of clients in claims for personal injury, clinical negligence, civil liberties, abuse and serious injury and illness abroad.
It first launched an acquisitional arm to its business – webuyanyfiles.com – in 2011, offering lawyers, insolvency practitioners, accountants and other professionals an efficient and confidential way to sell legal practices and cases in the wake of increased restrictions on success fees and entitlements.
The venture proved a huge success, and to date has seen Hudgell Solicitors complete close to 40 deals for practices of varying size, taking on thousands of clients in deals worth more than £8million in upfront and deferred payments.
Now, with further significant costs restrictions and reforms again on the horizon, including an increase in the small claims limit to £5,000 for RTA claims and £2,000 for other types of personal injury claim, and proposed fixed recoverable costs in clinical negligence cases and holiday sickness claims, Mr Hudgell senses another shift in the market.
“Many firms in the same areas of work as us will be finding themselves running increasingly difficult caseloads, perhaps struggling with cash flow and lending, and considering exiting the market, of that there is no doubt,” said Mr Hudgell.
“We’ve always been open to opportunity and ready to talk to people over the past few years, but have been well aware that many have battled on despite facing ever more hurdles.
“As a firm we sense the beginning of another significant market exodus over the coming 12 to 24 months and we have seen the beginnings of that already, having had negotiations with a number of firms over potential deals in recent months.
“It is pretty safe to say that the 12 months ahead will be viewed as a year of uncertainty for many, but it is perhaps another year of opportunity for us. With that in mind it seemed right to reignite the webuyanyfiles.com brand and offer.
“For retiring partners or sole practitioners with diminishing casebooks and firms which have retained claims departments which are not the business model going forward, we are far from the wolves at the door.
“We feel we will be very much a welcome visitor who can assist those looking to retire, firms seeking to reduce overheads and liabilities or to free up capital to invest in other areas of the business.
“Given the growth of our business in recent years, the scale and sophistication of our operations and our recent expansion into the North West via our Manchester office, we offer those who turn to us an established route, and one where they know their clients will be guaranteed the best possible representation at a firm with a track record of being rehabilitation focused at every stage.
“We also have a proven track record in how we deal with the firms we take cases from, with me personally handling the negotiations confidentially.”
Manchester seminar will outline offer made by ‘webuyanyfiles’ and Hudgell
Hudgell Solicitors has now announced it is staging a seminar in Manchester, where it opened a new office last year, on May 1.
It is aimed at lawyers, insolvency practitioners, financial advisors, accountants, agents or advisors with clients who may be looking to sell their practices and is being billed as ‘an opportunity to discover how changes in the legal landscape could impact on business and how best to plan for the future’
Speakers, including Mr Hudgell himself, will provide expert advice on tax planning, due diligence and offsetting risk whilst exploring the We Buy Any Files proposition from start to finish.
“The message is that we are open for business, across all areas of our work, and are happy to take referrals,” added Mr Hudgell.
“We have a great track record in this over the past eight years and recognise that no two deals are the same. That is why we make our offer flexible to suit the needs of the selling firm, if their cases are a match for our business going forward.”
‘We Buy Any Files’ – An evening with Neil Hudgell and Guests
Wednesday, May 1, Malmaison Manchester, 4.30pm-6.30pm
Mary Tierney – Tax Director – Bennett Brooks
Mary has worked within tax and more specifically with OMBs for 30 years, advising on all aspects of personal and corporate tax planning. Over the years she has worked with many business owners, helping them to maximise the value of their business.
Zoe Holland – Managing Director – Zebra
Zoe Holland is the Founder & MD of award-winning legal sector business ZebraLC. Zoe has unprecedented experience in legal sector ‘first’ M&A deals and boasts a national reputation as a technical due diligence specialist, assessing law firm WIP value, together with legal business profit improvement and risk profiling.
Neil Hudgell -Managing Director – Hudgell Solicitors /We Buy Any Files
Owner and Managing Director of We Buy Any Files which offers lawyers, insolvency practitioners, accountants and other professionals an efficient and confidential way to sell legal practices and cases.