SIX-partner London commercial practice Steggles Palmer is joining the much larger London and Home Counties firm Kidd Rapinet.

Although the move is being described as a merger, it is effectively a takeover by Kidd Rapinet, which has 35 partners operating out of nine offices.

The link-up with Steggles came about via an agency. Kidd Rapinet managing partner, Paul Taylor, said his firm was “always in the market for mergers”.

Kidd Rapinet has a recent history packed full of mergers bids. Since 1989 it has acquired several home counties practices including

Rimmers, Boyle Ormerod, Stilgoes, Freed Stone Goodman, Pulver Symondson and Francis & How.

A merger with Luety Lynch ended in de-merger six months ago.

Steggles managing partner Chris Henniker, is one of two of the six partners who will continue on as partners in their new firm.

He said he would concentrate on developing the company commercial client base, said his staff would make up around 40 per cent of the Kidd Rapinet's office in Trafalgar Square, in London's West End.

He said he had been attracted to the new firm because it was commercially pragmatic, business-like and “they seem intent on taking their business forward”.

A spokesman for Kidd Rapinet said that he and his fellow partners were “thrilled and excited” about the move.