Cobbetts, Lee Crowder merger forms regional giant

Cobbetts and Birmingham’s Lee Crowder have agreed to merge on 1 May 2004, creating a top 50 firm based on turnover.

The combined firm, to be called Cobbetts, expects to turnover £45m in its first financial year. Cobbetts’ expects turnover to increase by 15.4 per cent to £30m for the year ending 30 April 2004. Meanwhile, Lee Crowder estimates its turnover will be £11m for the same period.

The new firm will comprise 116 partners, including 52 equity, who will all move into Cobbetts’ existing modified lockstep.

Under the terms of the merger Michael Shaw and Stephen White Cobbetts’ managing partner and senior partner respectively will retain their titles to run the new firm.

Lee Crowder senior partner Stephen Gilmore will step down from his current post and take over as national head of corporate. Meanwhile, Lee Crowder’s chief executive Bryan Tickner, a qualified accountant, will leave the firm next April.

As first reported in The Lawyer last month Cobbetts is launching a London office to service international clients gained through its recent merger with niche mining firm Fox Brooks Marshall.