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DWF and Cobbetts in merger talks 19 January 2012

North West firm DWF has confirmed it is in merger discussions with Manchester law firm Cobbetts.

A merger is likely to be a good fit for the businesses’ insolvency teams. Cobbetts’ business restructuring team is led by Sean McGrath who joined as a partner in 2004 to head the Manchester Business Restructuring Services Team.

DWF, meanwhile has been advertising for a corporate insolvency partner on its website to join its office in Leeds.

In a statement released to the press, Andrew Leaitherland said: “Lateral hires and strategic mergers are a key part of our growth strategy and it’s entirely consistent with this strategy that we should be in talks with any number of different parties to discuss the potential for a mutually beneficial strategic partnership.

“I can confirm that preliminary discussions with Cobbetts have taken place, but until any such discussions are brought to a conclusion we will not be in a position to talk about them publicly.”

Other units which may operate particularly harmoniously include Cobbett’s debt recovery unit – Incasso – which is well known within the industry.

If coupled with DWF’s operation division, led by David Scottow, this would represent significant market share.

DWF’s 2010/11 accounts show turnover rose by 15 per cent to £83m while net profit grew by 23 per cent, from £16.9m to £20.8m.

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