MJ Hudson and VerrasLaw merger to provide innovative onshore offshore one-stop shop

Posted: 10/09/2013

MJ Hudson logo
MJ Hudson, the alternative asset law firm, and Jersey's VerrasLaw have agreed to merge. The merged firm, which will be known as MJ Hudson, will provide asset managers and investors with a one-stop legal shop for funds, investment, corporate finance and M&A work - onshore in London and offshore in the Channel Islands.

The merger is the next step by MJ Hudson to expand into key asset manager and funds jurisdictions. MJ Hudson also plans to open in Hong Kong later this year, as it continues with its aim to become the leading global alternative asset law firm.

Commenting on the news, MJ Hudson Managing Partner Eamon Devlin said, “Creating an onshore offshore capability under one roof is a timely and client driven innovation for our sector, where we are seeing a lot of demand, particularly focused on fund formation in alternatives.”

Historically asset managers have needed to appoint two law firms, one onshore and another offshore. This merger will make it more time and cost efficient for investment funds to come to market. The driver behind the link up was the need to offer clients - mainly fund managers and advisors -­ a seamless regulatory, tax and legal service.

Devlin added, “Clients are looking for a managed introduction to offshore jurisdictions, which is seen as a key home for servicing offshore funds advised out of London. Also VerrasLaw are most unusual in having built an offshore practice around asset manager clients, as opposed to the usual offshore model of relying on onshore law firm referrals, thus doubling our respective client bases.”

The new firm will offer an alternative model to the traditional onshore /offshore legal dichotomy with clients able to seek advice under one roof.

Hiren Patel and Jonathan Bale, the founders of VerrasLaw, said “Many of our clients have significant needs for advice in other jurisdictions and this merger allows us to provide them seamless delivery of their offshore advice, as well as English advice needed. Our two firms have excellent synergies and the enhanced capability will be very attractive to our clients both locally and internationally. ”

The merger is subject to regulatory approval. Until formal approval has been obtained, MJ Hudson and VerrasLaw will be working in association, but trading under the name of MJ Hudson.

Following the merger, the enlarged firm will have over 200 clients, principally GPs/managers and investors in Alternative Assets: private equity, hedhedge, venture capital, infrastructure, real estate, energy, credit and special purpose pools of capital. The firm will also continue to advise HNWs, family offices and ‘aggressive' corporates.

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