One of York’s best known legal firms has been bought for £11.5 million.
Fast-growing legal firm Knights plc has acquired Langleys in a deal which sees them “become the leading law firm in York”.
Langleys, which dates back to 1890, has its HQ on Micklegate. It also has an office in Lincoln.
In its unaudited accounts for the year ended 31 March 2021, Langleys reported revenue of around £14m, with 5% profit before tax.
Knights hopes to boost that profit level to 20%.
“The acquisition of Langleys is in line with the group’s strategy to accelerate its organic growth through carefully targeted acquisitions which are a strong cultural fit, with the firm’s real estate and corporate offerings being closely aligned with Knights’ existing services,” Knights said in a statement.
“Langleys has particular strength in private wealth, where there is significant growth potential.”
The deal in detail
Under the terms of the acquisition, Knights will acquire Langleys from its four existing equity partners on a debt free, cash free basis for a £11.5m.
This comprises an initial payout of £8m, made up of £5.25m in cash and £2.75m in 704,515 new ordinary shares in Knights, along with deferred cash consideration of £3.5m to be paid in equal instalments over the three years following completion.
Last year, Knights became the first commercial tenant to move into the Hudson Quarter. The deal set a record for York office rents at £25 per sq ft for the new 4,700 sq ft space.
David Beech, CEO of Knights, said: “The acquisition sees us become the leading law firm in York and provides a strong base for organic growth in the East of England through Lincoln, as we continue to strengthen our position as the leading legal and professional service business outside of London.”
Tim Cross, partner, Langleys, said: “Having built a strong reputation over a number of years, now is the right time to join Knights, whose growth journey we have followed in York and elsewhere across the regions.
“We believe Knights’ scale, ambition and ability to invest will enable us to unlock significant growth potential and we look forward to achieving this as part of a larger group.”