Law firm Burness Paull named as 2017's top dealmaker

Work on major corporate deals including ones involving Weir Group, Fishers Laundry and Arran Aromatics has seen law firm Burness Paull named as the top legal corporate dealmaker in Scotland for the third year running.

Philp Rodney of Burness Paull
Philp Rodney of Burness Paull

The Scottish firm, headed by chairman Philip Rodney, posted what it said was a record-breaking performance during 2017 when it advised on 296 publishable transactions with a total value of £42.8 billion.

They included Weir Group’s £89 million acquisition of KOP Surface Products, the sale of Maven Capital backed Crawford Scientific, Canada-based Kbro’s acquisition of the Fishers laundry services group and Endless LLP’s deal to acquire Arran Aromatics. The firm has also advised Standard Life Aberdeen’s financial planning arm 1825 Financial Planning on acquisitions.

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Peter Lawson, head of corporate for Burness Paull which has offices in Edinburgh, Glasgow and Aberdeen, said 2017 “had been an exceptionally busy year as the economy has bounced back from a period of uncertainty”.

“The corporate transactions market in Scotland has reflected that and taking the top spot for three years in a row is testament to the consistent hard work of our entire team. The latest numbers really underline the scale of their achievement over the past 12 months,” he added.

Chris Gotts, the firm’s head of corporate finance, said success in the table compiled by Scottish Business Insider magazine was helped by a number of economic factors.

“Private equity has been particularly busy, with technology deals featuring prominently and capital markets activity has also been resurgent in Scotland, and as a firm we have been involved in all but one of the Scottish IPOs over the last year which we are very proud of.”

Gotts said other factors behind increased deal flow included the recovery in the oil and gas sector. Aberdeen-based Anderson Anderson & Brown was named as the most active accountant for deals during the year by Scottish Business Insider.