Begbies acquires Manchester firm

MANCHESTER-BASED insolvency specialists Cooper Williamson has been snapped up by Begbies Traynor.

Cooper Williamson recently posted revenues of £1.7m and a pre-tax profit of £0.4m for the year ending 31 May 2013. It has seen strong performance from its website, but its caseload of large clients has been mostly regional – which Begbies hopes will change under its broader office structure.

The deal value is £0.9m, half-paid in cash and the rest through a share issuance. Deferred consideration of a further £1.1m is dependent on financial performance over the three years from completion. A further 0.5m consideration will be paid out based on “robust” turnover targets in the following two years.

The acquired firm will join Begbies’ existing Manchester office.

Ric Traynor (pictured), executive chairman of Begbies Traynor, said: “The acquisition of Cooper Williamson is an exciting development for us, and is in line with our strategy to enhance our position as the UK’s leading independent insolvency practice. It will reinforce our presence in the north west and give us the opportunity to expand Cooper Williamson’s already successful model and business rescue internet portal on a national scale.”

Yesterday Begbies was in gloomier form, with Traynor explaining at its AGM that the insolvency market was “subdued”, with no signs of improvement.

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