South East: Gateley well placed as residential property market grows

Law firm Gateley is well positioned to capitalise on the growth of the housing market in the South East, chief executive Michael Ward has stressed in announcing the group’s results for the year ended April 30, 2019.

The legal and professional services group highlighted a 20% increase in revenue and 8.9% rise in pre-tax profits, and Michael Ward said the strategic acquisition of housebuilder specialists GCL Solicitors in May 2018 had created a three-office axis to serve the property sector across the south.

With offices in Reading, Guildford and London, Ward said: “With the acquisition of GCL, which created our new Guildford office, we now have a trio of southern offices to capitalise on the significant and sector diverse opportunities in this region. Our Reading office has continued to establish wider connections and obtain greater local recognition, culminating in being named Law Firm of the Year at the Thames Valley Deals Awards this year (2018). Our existing London base provides niche services lines, creates opportunities for synergies, such as with Kiddy, and remains a gateway for our national and international connections that we are targeting through existing connections and our newly acquired International Investment Services offering.”

He added: “I am delighted to welcome GCL to the Group. The acquisition further strengthened our leading position in the house building sector nationally and provide us with an expanded presence in the Southern market, which we see as critical in developing a full service offering for our clients. There is an under supply of new housing in the UK and we expect this market to remain strong.

“The South East, in particular, will continue to be a significant engine for housing growth for the foreseeable future. The acquisition allows us to offer a wider geographical reach to our clients in the residential development market. We can now match our national office network to our residential development clients’ regions, with seven residential development teams operating across the country. There are also many clear opportunities across the Group from this strategic acquisition, not least for Gateley Hamer and Gateley Capitus.”

In 2015, Gateley was the first commercial UK law firm to list on the London Stock Exchange’s Alternative Investment Market (AIM).