Brexit WILL Impact Deals Activity

Turner Parkinson, the Manchester-based business law firm, has said 2016 was its best ever year for deals, but is sounding a note of caution around future North West deal volumes.

The firm, which has 71 staff and 16 partners, completed 96 deals last year, with a combined transaction value of £735m (2015: 86 deals worth £590m).

Operating from a single office in Manchester, TP’s deal performance offers a barometer of North West business activity levels and the strength of the regional economy.

James Sheridan, TP’s Corporate head, commented: “While our deals take us all over the UK and occasionally overseas, almost all of them have some kind of connection to the region, so North West wealth and economic activity is at the core of everything we do. It is good to see both deal volume and deal value having risen in what I think are tricky times.

“Manchester is able to attract quality businesses and investment with its pro-business culture and local government, and the continuing emergence of the city as the capital of regional UK is a positive for all of us with business interests in the region.”

However, Sheridan says that with political and economic uncertainty ahead, deal values and volumes will fall this year.

“In my view the whole Brexit environment is likely to have a negative impact on economic activity for an extended period of time. I am expecting deal volume and value to decline over the next couple of years as the impact of the inevitable macro-economic changes gradually filters down to real businesses and the UK consumer.

“For us as a business the challenge is to continue to grow our market share and to exploit the opportunities that the economic changes present – both of which we are determined to do.”

Away from corporate finance transactions, Sheridan added that other deals teams at TP continued their growth with both Real Estate and Insolvency completing a “good number” of projects in 2016.