Addleshaw Goddard and Maclay Murray & Spens cease merger talks

Avatar photo

By Thomas Connelly on

Merger mania: Olswang eyeing up Bird & Bird and Simmons & Simmons, meanwhile Berwin Leighton Paisner and Greenberg Traurig in talks


Northern giant Addleshaw Goddard and Scotland’s largest remaining independent firm Maclay Murray & Spens have ended talks over a possible merger.

Hitting headlines back in November 2015, the proposed Anglo-Scottish outfit would have been one of the UK’s largest training contract providers, with a combined offering of around 55.

City outfit Addleshaw Goddard — which offers around 30 training contracts annually — has offices in London, Leeds, Manchester and five further outposts overseas. In comparison, the much smaller Glasgow-headquartered Maclay Murray & Spens offers around 25 training contracts each year, across its Aberdeen, Glasgow, Edinburgh and London offices.

Rumours circulated late last year that a cross-border merger between the two was on the cards and would be put to a partner vote in the late spring.

Although a target date of 1 May 2016 was already being penciled into the diary, it seems agreement could not be reached. If the merger had taken place it would have created a new firm with a turnover in excess of £200 million.

Addleshaw Goddard remained tight-lipped on the matter. A spokesperson for Maclay Murray & Spens said only that they were not in discussions with any firm over a possible merger at present.

Elsewhere in the City, merger tittle-tattle would suggest media firm Olswang is looking to couple-up.

With Olswang’s chief executive Paul Stevens trumpeting merger plans at a partnership conference late last month according to The Lawyer (registration required), fellow City players Bird & Bird and Simmons & Simmons are being earmarked as potential partners.

Finally, corporate outfit Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP) has confirmed that it is in early talks with US firm Greenberg Traurig.

BLP, which offers 45 training contracts annually, has 12 offices in eight countries, having launched in Beijing and Dubai in the last couple of years. Miami-based Greenberg Traurig has 37 offices across the United States, Latin America, Europe, the Middle East and Asia.