12 Sep 2022

Local law firm group MAPD takes majority stake in North-West firm Bermans

Group is actively looking for more potential deals as it seeks to expand nationwide

Brian Cullen and Joanna Kingston-Davies Image courtesy of MAPD Group

UK legal services business MAPD Group has taken a majority stake in Liverpool and Manchester-based firm Bermans as part of its plans to expand local law firms across the UK.

MAPD – which stands for Making A Positive Difference – has taken a 75% stake in the firm, with Bermans partners retaining a 25% stake. MAPD intends to grow the firm by at least 25% over the next three years. Bermans is a commercial law practice with a specialism in asset and invoice finance.

Brian Cullen, CEO of MAPD, said: “We knew from our first meeting with the partners that Bermans’ culture would fit ours – the initial discussions focused entirely on how to grow the business and the people within it, with no talk about finances. It also adds heavyweight corporate and commercial expertise to the group.”

He added: “We see great opportunities for strong regional law firms that need the rocket fuel we can provide to take them to the next level. We believe in sustainable growth, which means investing in people, delivering great client service, providing high-quality advice and ensuring a fair profit. Bermans has all the ingredients we look for and will make for a great addition to MAPD.”

The Bermans acquisition adds to other North-West-based local firms in the group, including Jackson Lees and Broudie Jackson Canter and Stoke-based Myers & Co. The Bermans acquisition also adds an additional £8m in turnover to the group, with MAPD’s annual revenue now around £24m.

Bermans’ senior partner Fergal O’Cleirigh said the deal returns value to the firm’s shareholders while preserving its identity and culture. The firm will continue operating under the Bermans brand and maintain all of its existing staff.

MAPD was founded in 2020 by Cullen and COO Joanna Kingston-Davies and is backed by Shard Credit Partners. The group is actively looking for more potential deals as it seeks to expand nationwide.

Kish Patel, an associate at Shard Credit Partners, said: “Everything we’ve seen to date has justified our belief in MAPD’s buy-and-build acquisition strategy to create a significant legal services group nationwide. Law is an extremely fragmented market and there are some excellent firms out there that just need the skilled support MAPD can provide to grow their share of it significantly.”