Bristol poised to benefit as legal beagles seal major merger

July 25, 2011

Law firms Beachcroft, which has a major office in Bristol, and smaller rival, London-based Davies Arnold Cooper (DAC), are to merge in a move that could lead to new opportunities for Beachcroft's Bristol operation.

The merged firm – to be called DAC Beachcrof LLP – will have an annual turnover of more than £175m, 2,000-plus staff and a comprehensive network of offices in the UK and international offices and links covering Europe, Latin America, North America and Asia Pacific. 

Beachcroft, which has a staff of 450 in Bristol from where it runs a number of national specialist teams, is significantly larger than DAC  Its 1,650 employees include more than 950 lawyers and 162 partners. DAC has two offices in London and others in Madrid, Mexico City and Manchester. Opportunities for the Bristol office include in the real estate market, where both firms have a major presence.

Simon Hodson, senior partner at Beachcroft, will become overall senior partner at the new firm while DAC senior partner Danny Gowan will be the international senior partner and Paul Murray, managing partner at Beachcroft, will become the overall managing partner. The merger takes place on November 1

The two firms said in a joint statement: "DAC Beachcroft will have market-leading teams working with clients in the insurance, real estate and healthcare sectors.  The merger will also create significantly enhanced teams advising clients on their corporate, commercial, regulatory, employment and dispute resolution requirements."

Mr Murray said: "Both firms specialise in the insurance sector and the combined firm will provide insurance clients with a distinctive, full-service offering in the UK and internationally.  In addition, Beachcroft's market-leading health practice will be well complemented by Davies Arnold Cooper's strong presence in the life sciences sector."

Beachcroft's Bristol office provides the administrative back-office function for the firm nationwide. Leading specialisms include construction, real estate, projects, PFI/PPP, injury risk, professional indemnity, commercial litigation, employment and pensions and corporate/commercial law. Industry expertise is particularly strong in financial services, technology, construction & property, education, health and public sectors.



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