Essex firm Birkett Long continues expansion drive with local merger

Basildon-based firm Birkett Long has expanded its offering in its home town by merging with local outfit Brian Ruff Angus and Jewers (BRAJ).

The staff of Wickford-based BRAJ are set to move two miles down the road to Basildon in mid-June, with the deal coming less than a year after the expansive Essex firm first open in the town.

Birkett Long managing partner Adrian Livesley said in a statement: “We have great confidence in the marketplace as well as an ongoing determination to thrive in a difficult economic climate. With this level of growth in such a short period of time, we’re confident that we’ll be able to create job roles for Basildon in the short to medium term.”

Birkett Long, which also has offices in Colchester and Chelmsford, has now rolled out four mergers since 2009 after consuming Colchester firms Jackson & Partners and Passmores and Chelmsford firm Weight Wolny & Trusler.

It found itself in a sticky situation in 2010 when Chelmsford-based Wollastons merged with Ipswich-based Birketts, meaning the two firms that share a name – and were combined before their 1995 demerger – had become competitors in the same market.

“It will rapidly become clear that we’re very different firms,” Birketts senior partner Nigel Farthing said at the time (27 September 2010).