780 professionals at Knights service 10,000 clients across the full spectrum of legal & professional services.
James SheridanClient Services Director
James is a Client Services Director.
James advises on corporate transactions, mergers, acquisitions and disposals, private equity and development capital deals, corporate investments and other strategic projects. He also undertakes equity capital markets work for small and mid-cap public companies. A corporate lawyer with the ICAEW Corporate Finance qualification.
James is experienced in both domestic and international transactions, having worked on deals in the USA, Continental Europe, Africa and Asia. He has a particular interest in business in India and Australia.
James advises corporates, their shareholders and management teams, as well as a number of public companies, private and institutional investors and the family offices of a number of high net worth families. His clients include Indian automotive and logistics conglomerate TVS & Sons, Swedish listed pharmaceutical business Recipharm AB and UK-based APS Salads, Logson Group and real estate developer SevenCapital.
James understands corporate transactions first hand, having previously been a non-executive director of drug development company Phosphate Therapeutics and helping to take it from first round venture capital investment to its subsequent disposal as part of a £180 million IPO. He is also senior independent director at Lancashire Cricket Club, where he is involved in strategic projects across both the sporting and business operations at Emirates Old Trafford, and Vice Chairman of Lancashire Cricket Foundation.
Recent examples of how James has helped clients include:
- the USD94m sale of chemical manufacturing business Stirling Lloyd plc to US-based GCP Applied Technologies Inc;
- advising Warren James on its strategy to take a 28% stake in Pinewood Shepperton while the subject matter of a recommended takeover offer at £96m and the subsequent £323m takeover of Pinewood by Aermont Capital;
- guiding Recipharm through its £45m acquisition of the respiratory drugs business of global biopharmaceutical company Sanofi, including its manufacturing centre in Cheshire; and
- working with Manchester software business Mobysoft on its investment from private equity firm Livingbridge to develop predictive software solutions for the social housing sector.
Chris FaulknerOffice Partner
Chris is a Partner in the Corporate team.
Chris works with a broad mix of owner-managers, SMEs, and individuals with significant personal wealth - particularly in the sports and manufacturing sectors. He also acts for banks, borrowers and private equity investors.
Chris has spent the past 10 years helping businesses grow and prosper, advising on corporate finance and business strategy including mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, company or group restructuring, business disposals, investment opportunities, succession planning and exit strategies. He also advises on banking and finance, private equity investments, shareholders' agreements, directors' duties, corporate governance and partnership matters.
Recent examples of how Chris has helped clients include:
- concluding a corporate finance deal in a very short-period of time by dissuading those involved from adopting unreasonable positions that might have thwarted the deal;
- helping a business in financial crisis raise funds to continue to trade; and
- helping successive owners of a family business maximise the value and tax efficiency of their enterprise with tailored investment, restructuring and succession planning advice.
Sally WightmanOffice Partner
Sally is a Partner in the Corporate team.
Sally's field of expertise is in company mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, re-organisations and re-structurings, as well as corporate advisory matters in high value transactions. She has long-standing clients to include serial entrepreneurs, family-owned businesses and major corporates across sectors, including the food, leisure and aviation sectors.
Sally is office leader in Chester office where she is responsible for client management and growing and building the team. This includes recruiting, developing and promoting lawyers who share the positive and open culture, and providing ongoing training and coaching.
Recent examples of how Sally has helped clients include:
- within tight time constraints, advising on the purchase of up to £100 million receivables from the administrators of Phones4u;
- realising the full sale value of an aviation maintenance business for its US parent company; and
- supporting clients in cross border transactions, including working with one of Ireland's major dairy exporters on its acquisition of a UK business and subsequent refinancing and advising on the sale of a national company to a major Dutch group.
William is a Partner in the Corporate team.
William has spent nearly twenty years advising businesses and their investors on corporate transactions, mergers and acquisitions, shareholder and investment agreements, and commercial matters including corporate governance. He specialises in owner-managed sales and purchases, company reorganisations and investment and joint venture arrangements.
William acts for owner-managers, SMEs, entrepreneurs and private equity investors, in sectors as diverse as renewable energy, hotel and leisure and independent financial advisors.
Recent examples of how William has helped clients include:
- acting for the seller of a company to a US buyer and structuring the consideration in the most tax efficient way for the seller;
- acting for the administrators of Wedgwood Museum in the sale of its assets to the V & A Museum following the collapse of Wedgwood; and
- helping a major hotel chain re-organise its portfolio of hotels to make the group structure more tax efficient.
Lisa is a Partner in the Corporate team.
Lisa specialises in corporate and commercial advice provided to clients spanning owner managed, small, medium-sized and multinational businesses.
Lisa has worked on and led corporate restructures, mergers and acquisitions, management buyouts and buy-ins, share option schemes. From a commercial perspective Lisa has advised a number of household names on transactions from the implementation of e-commerce and multichannel initiatives, right through the spectrum of commercial contracts to the negotiation of agency and outsourcing agreements.
She has particular focus on the retail industry having advised numerous high street brands on a variety of transactions from the implementation of e-commerce and multichannel initiatives, right through the spectrum to the negotiation of franchising and agency agreements.
Lisa specialises in corporate law, commercial law and retail.
Sian is a Partner in the Corporate team.
Sian acts for SMEs, off-shore entities, owner-managed businesses and AIM companies in a wide range of sectors including real estate, retail, technology, charities and education.
Sian provides corporate advice on a range of matters including, acquisitions, disposals, mergers, entrepreneurial and institutional investments, joint ventures, management buy-outs and buy-ins, reorganisations and restructuring. She also negotiates and drafts shareholders' agreements, articles of association and share capital reductions.
Sian advises a number of education and charity clients on governance, constitutional matters, reorganisations and the merging of charities.
Recent examples of how Sian has helped clients include:
- providing ongoing corporate advice and support to Long Harbour on its real estate investments, with multiple large transactions handled in the last five years;
- the merger of two charitable schools including advice on constitutional complexities and highly involved negotiation of merger documentation;
- providing ongoing advice to Oxford-based H2O Venture Partners on a variety of investments in the technology sector and a seed enterprise fund in East Africa;
- completing the multi-million pound sale of Ling Design, one of the UK's longest established and largest independent producers of greetings cards and stationery, to Swan Mill Holdings.
David is a Partner in the Corporate team.
David advises on corporate transactions, with a focus on domestic and international mergers and acquisitions. He works closely with the management teams of rapid growth businesses and with the private equity funders who back them.
David has sector expertise in e-commerce, technology/TMT, logistics, healthcare and particularly retail pharmacies. His clients are corporates, international companies with UK operations and private equity investors.
Recent examples of how David has helped his clients include:
- securing a multi-million-pound investment from NorthEdge Capital in cloud transformation and infrastructure specialists Cloud Technology Solutions to facilitate the tech company’s rapid growth and expansion plans;
- facilitating the sale of a 60 per cent stake in Leicestershire-based packaging business Logson Group to Belfast-based commodities and storage specialists W & R Barnett;
- securing a multi-million pound investment from Beech Tree Private Equity in cloud IT managed services business BCN Group; and
- completing the £39.3 million acquisition of the 36-branch pharmacy division of Assura on behalf of Cohens Chemist.
Greg is a Partner in the Corporate team.
Greg has acted for many buyers and sellers of companies (share transactions) and businesses and assets. Such transactions have ranged in value from the very small to those consisting of tens of millions of pounds. Greg has particular experience acting for companies involved in fund raising exercises, whether by way of debt, such as an issue of loan notes, or by way of the issue of shares. Greg has recently concluded a transaction relating to a multi-million Euro cross-border loan note issue to numerous parties with complex conversion and other rights.
Additionally, Greg advises companies in connection with re-organisations that may be effected for a variety of reasons. He also advises shareholders and partners as regards their legal relationships between themselves, as well as in connection with the documents that govern such relationships such as shareholders’ agreements, articles of association and partnership agreements.
Greg’s clients are typically in the SME/OMB sector and include a well-known manufacturer in the engineering sector and a cluster of companies involved in developing new technologies.
Stephen is a Partner in the Corporate team.
Stephen advises on company incorporation, the establishment of traditional partnerships and LLPs, business mergers and acquisitions, company and corporate restructuring, share purchase agreements, business sales, succession planning and exit strategies, and the resolution of commercial disputes.
Stephen’s clients include professional practices, owner-managed SMEs and family businesses.
Stephen also acts for trusts and charities who require guidance on organisational matters, governance and general legal affairs and who value his experience as a fellow trustee and immediate past chair of a midland’s based children’s hospice.
Recent examples of how Stephen has helped clients include:
- arranging the refinancing of seed capital worth £8 million on behalf of an alternative energy start-up following the closure of a government sponsored fund and its transfer to BP;
- aiding a father in the resolution of a protracted shareholder dispute with his daughter on terms which saw him exit the family business on commercially and personally acceptable terms;
- successfully defending the past trustees of a trust against allegations that they had wrongly disposed of trust assets by establishing that the assets in question had never been within the trust’s ownership; and
- devising a plan to enable the majority shareholders in a family company to acquire the interests of minority non-family shareholders to bring the company back within the family’s exclusive control.
Clare is a Partner in the Corporate team.
Clare works with corporates, SMEs, sole traders and private equity houses throughout the UK including some with both domestic and international operations.
Clare advises on corporate transactions such as company and business sales, acquisitions and mergers, re-organisations, investments, shareholder and partnership arrangements, share incentive schemes, general company law and corporate governance. She also advises on and negotiates various commercial contracts including agreements for the supply of goods and services, distribution and agency agreements, outsourcing arrangements, sponsorship deals and general terms and conditions.
Clare provides training on company and commercial law.
Recent examples of how Clare has helped clients include:
- implementing the succession plan of a family business which allowed the parents to retire, release capital and maintain an income;
- advising a retail client on a large warehousing and logistics agreement; and
- carrying out a complex group re-organisation for a manufacturing client.
Lindsey is a Partner in the Corporate team.
Lindsey advises on corporate matters, including corporate structuring and reorganisation, mergers and acquisitions, business sales, cross-border transactions, share purchase arrangements, management buyouts, joint ventures, corporate funding and secured corporate lending.
Lindsey specialises in the self-storage and flexible space sectors, advising on sale and purchase transactions and commercial issues including management agreements, terms and conditions of trading and licensing arrangements.
Lindsey is experienced in multi-jurisdictional work and has a niche practice advising offshore trustees on the sale of their shares in private companies, managing their exposure to risk.
She acts for entrepreneurs, owner-managed SMEs in the UK and internationally, and Lindsey is also an advisor to the Self-Storage Association.
Recent examples of how Lindsey has helped clients include:
- facilitating the demerger of a self-storage business on behalf of the owners who wanted to manage their risk exposure, creating standalone entities capable of being sold independently;
- supporting the incoming management team in the acquisition of a wealth management company under a management buyout, with the exit of retiring management and incentivisation of loyal employees who were key to growth plans;
- negotiating the sale of a UK insurance underwriting agency owned by offshore trusts in a deal which required careful structuring to ensure the trustees’ liabilities were adequately contained without frustrating the underlying deal;
- guiding the management team of a growing self-storage business through a private equity funded buyout to enable expansion of operations and acquisition of an additional site; and
- creating an exit route for the owner of a niche but unsaleable consultancy business by striking a deal with one of their customers, rewarding our client for helping retain the consultancy clients and sharing their expertise to enable the purchaser to enter new markets.
John is a Partner in the Real Estate team.
John advises on a range of corporate, commercial and real estate matters. In regard to commercial property he handles acquisitions and disposals, drafting and negotiating options and management agreements, landlord and tenant matters including leases, leasehold enfranchisement, freeholder issues and right to manage.
For corporate transactions, John undertakes real estate due diligence and advises on business sale agreements, joint ventures and shareholder protection, supply and distribution agreements.
John acts for residential and institutional investors, SMEs, lenders and educational institutions, particularly academies, whether newly forming or already established.
Recent examples of how John has helped clients include:
- enabling a client to purchase a commercial property and convert it to residential by creating an agreement incorporating a management arrangement with an option to purchase;
- facilitating the efficient growth of a business after internal disharmony by advising shareholders on a company share buy-back scheme and assisting in the reassessment of their business' value; and
- playing a key role in securing a lucrative deal for a client to supply uniforms to a blue-chip US cosmetics firm.
Gemma is a Partner in the Corporate team.
Gemma advises NHS and private healthcare providers on a range of corporate matters, including business sales and acquisitions, mergers, joint ventures, management buy-outs, private equity investment, corporate refinancing and company reorganisations.
Gemma has extensive knowledge of dental and pharmacy businesses, including the regulatory environment within which they operate. She advises on the registration requirements of the General Dental and Pharmaceutical Councils and on NHS contract arrangements, including transfer between service providers.
Gemma’s clients include pharmacists, dentists, opticians, vets, care home operators, day care providers, independent fostering agencies and domiciliary care providers. She also acts for a number of high street banks lending into the healthcare sector.
Current clients include the Dental Care Group and the Dental Beauty Group, and dispensing chemists Z&N Ltd and Wellbeing (United Kingdom) Ltd.
Recent examples of how Gemma has helped clients include:
- the sale of a large mixed practice dental group in a deal worth £10 million with hard negotiations around the ongoing liability for any defective treatment claims;
- supporting a first time buyer in their purchase of a pharmacy business in London, requiring registration with the General Pharmaceutical Council and the transfer of an NHS service contract;
- protecting the interests of a mainstream lender in a refinancing deal with a large dental group borrowing in excess of £16 million; and
- restructuring a mid-sized dental group to secure finance to fund a series of planned acquisitions and to meet ongoing obligations under NHS contract arrangements.
Ellen is a Partner in the Corporate and Education teams.
Ellen advises on corporate matters, including business formation and structuring options, governance, mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, investment, company restructuring, group reorganisation, company share sales or buyback arrangements, and business assets disposal.
Ellen’s clients include business start-ups and entrepreneurs, owner-managed companies and partnerships, high growth and scale up businesses and investors operating in sectors including retail, leisure and hospitality, technology, telecommunications, professional services and healthcare.
Ellen advises charities, schools and not for profit organisations, including community interest companies, on incorporation and governance arrangements, constitutional documents, company secretarial matters, collaboration initiatives and mergers.
Recent examples of how Ellen has helped clients include:
- supporting the in-house legal team of a Portuguese investment company on the English legal considerations arising from an investment in a UK-based tech company;
- facilitating the £4 million sale of shares in a telecommunications company under a complex deferred consideration deal where the seller required extensive disclosure and advice on risk mitigation;
- working with a charity to review and update their governance documents and trading subsidiary articles of association to facilitate the exploitation of new opportunities while respecting the interests of beneficiaries and stakeholders;
- guiding a US limited liability company through the process of acquiring shares in an Australian company and an English company with a German subsidiary, both owned by a US corporate, in a deal worth over $4 million; and
- supporting an independent school in a merger with a larger school to strengthen its offering and secure the investment needed to fund improved services and continued growth.
Adrian is a Partner in the Corporate team.
Adrian facilitates company mergers, acquisitions and disposals, corporate finance and refinance, joint ventures and other collaborative working arrangements, groups restructures and reorganisations and bespoke strategic projects.
Adrian acts for UK-based clients with domestic and international business interests and international clients with a UK presence. His clients include large corporates, such as Jackson-Stops, private equity companies and corporate investors, including Business Growth Fund, SMEs and high net worth individuals. He operates across all sectors and has particular experience in the sale and acquisition of hotels and caravan parks.
Recent examples of how Adrian has helped clients include:
- guiding Recipharm through their £45 million acquisition of the respiratory drugs business of global biopharmaceuticals company Sanofi, including their manufacturing centre in Cheshire;
- supporting the Logson Group in their acquisition of the multi-million pound business of packaging specialists, the Cardboard Box Company; and
- facilitating investments by Business Growth Fund in highways surveying technology business Gaist Solutions, web hosting firm Miss Group and international bakery business Carrs Goods Holdings.