Irwin Mitchell acquire a fifth firm

Law firm Irwin Mitchell has acquired the business of HL Interactive through their debt legal arm, Ascent.

It is the fifth deal made by the Manchester based recoveries group since it was granted Alternative Business Structure (ABS) licenses and the fourth to be completed by Ascent, establishing Ascent as the UK market leader of recoveries law firms.

Since Irwin Mitchell became the first multiple-licensed ABS in 2012 the group has acquired personal injury firm MPH solicitors, PDP Management Services, Elliot Dabvies and Fraser Gowrie Johnson.

Last year the firm exceeded income of £200m for the first time, and John Pickering, group chief executive, said the deal demonstrated the continued financial strength of the business.

HL Interactive, based in Manchester city centre, was originally formed in 2004 and has expanded rapidly, and the move will take all 62 of HL Interactive’s staff to Ascent, helping to fulfil Irwin Mitchell’s major recruitment drive, which has already seen new Partners add to the 29 partner and partner-level appointments made in 2013.

John Pickering, group chief executive and partner, said of the latest acquisition: ‘This deal once again highlights our determination to take advantage of opportunities which arise which we deem to be right for our business.This is an important addition to our debt legal services business which will further strengthen our position in this important market for us.

‘It builds on other investment we have made, including very significant recruitment in both our business legal services division and in our personal legal services teams. In a legal market that continues to be challenging, we are in a very strong position and intend to build on that. ‘

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