North West firm Weightmans is in merger talks with Mace & Jones and Vizards Wyeth.
If £56m-turnover Weightmans acquires the two smaller firms then it will have a turnover just short of £80m.
This is a major development for the firm, which has taken a conservative approach to growth under the tutelage of managing partner Patrick Gaul.
“There’s nothing signed as of yet,” he told The Lawyer. “But there’s a strong business case. I’m wary about big projects, it’s got to make economic sense, our priority is maintaining a sustainable offering.”
Legal website rollonfriday.com, which revealed the news today, reported that a number of jobs could be at risk at Vizards Wyeth, which Weightmans is interested in acquiring because of its insurance expertise and South Eastern coverage.
Mace & Jones is a North West-based outfit that is active in corporate, property, employment and commercial work.
Gaul said that he wouldn’t “rule anything out” at this stage in terms of maintaining or closing offices it acquires. He also admitted that the firm might need to reshape its partnership structure to accommodate the influx of new partners. “It would be naïve to think there wouldn’t be some changes,” he admitted.
If all the staff from Mace & Jones and Vizards Wyeth were brought on board then it would add another 150 members of staff to Weightmans’ 935 headcount.