Law firms Withy King and Lemon & Co are to merge, forming one of the largest legal firms in Wiltshire.
Fast-growing Withy King, which has a string of offices including Swindon and Marlborough, and Lemon & Co, a single-office practice based in Swindon, will join forces on June 30.
The firms said the move strengthened the range of services and expertise they can provide to businesses and private clients.
The move is the latest in a string of mergers and acquisitions among law firms in the region. It is also Withy King’s second expansion deal in six months following its takeover of a small Oxfordshire practice last December. The firm has said it is actively seeking further growth opportunities as it continues to develop into a regional force in the legal market.
Withy King, recently ranked among the Sunday Times Top 100 Best Companies to work for, employs 280 people across its network of offices, including a team of 30 in its Old Town, Swindon, office. It has an annual turnover of £18.1m.
Lemon & Co has 40 staff – including three full equity partners – and a turnover of £2.4m.
Withy King managing partner Graham Street said: “This is a great opportunity for two like-minded firms to strengthen and expand the range of services they offer to clients in Wiltshire and further afield.
“Lemon & Co has a well-established private client practice renowned for its family and residential property services and a robust corporate services and commercial property offering, which will complement Withy King’s work in these areas.
“We are very pleased to welcome the team at Lemon & Co to our firm and look forward to working closely together to achieve our ambitions of providing an unbeatable service to our clients and achieving our aims of becoming a UK Top 100 law firm.”
Lemon & Co managing partner Deirdre Moss added: “We are delighted to be merging with Withy King, a firm with an outstanding reputation and with such a fine progressive approach.
“The two firms will complement each other in terms of services to our respective clients as well as providing additional breadth and depth right across the legal services we offer.
“Our founder Harold Lemon started practising as a solicitor in Swindon just about 100 years ago; we are proud of our heritage, culture and values as are Withy King; there is great synergy.”
Withy King will move from its Old Town office to join Lemon & Co’s team based in Regent Circus in the town centre.
Staff in both firms are involved in statutory consultation discussions to manage the integration of the two firms. They said no further announcement would be made on staffing levels in the merged firm until these consultations had been concluded.
The newly-merged firm will initially be known in Swindon as Withy King, incorporating Lemon & Co.
The value of the deal and other commercially-sensitive information has not been disclosed.
Withy King, which has also offices in Bath, Oxford, Abingdon, Thame and London, acquired law firm Whetter Duckworth Fowler based in Wheatley, Oxfordshire, last December.
Pictured: Withy King's Graham Street and Deirdre Moss of Lemon & Co