Acquisitive law firm confident in the ‘resilience’ of the business

Listed professional services business Knights has seen its profit before tax boost by 68% its half year results for the six months ending 31 October 2023.

The Newcastle-under-Lyme headquartered firm reported profits before tax of £6.9m and revenue increasing by 6% to £75.3m.

Net debt has also increased to £38.3m following a £7.5m acquisition consideration, but is alleviated by Knights securing a £70m credit facility with HSBC, Allied Irish Bank and NatWest until November 2026.

20 senior staff have been recruited during this time in comparison the nine in previous period, as well as five partners being recruited into Bristol and Newcastle, where the firm entered in Feb 2023 and May 2023 respectively.

Knights says it is confident in the resilience of the business and its ability to attract and retain quality talent and clients, despite macroeconomic pressure.

The group listed on AIM in 2018, and has seen significant growth both organically and through the acquisition of more than 20 independent legal and professional services firms, with revenues increasing from £9m to £142m over that period.

Acquisitions include St James Law (Newcastle) and Baines Wilson (Carlisle) as well as the recent integration of Coffin Mew (Portsmouth) and Meade King (Bristol).

David Beech, CEO of Knights, commented: “Knights has delivered a good performance in the period, reflecting our sharp focus on driving profitability and organic growth and the resilience provided by our diversified services, capabilities, and client base.

“We are delighted with the strong momentum in recruitment and retention in the half, which is testament to the attractiveness of our scale, reputation and model, the efforts of our client service directors, and enhancements we have made to our employee proposition, benefits and engagement. Together with improved retention across the business, this influx of high-calibre talent will underpin organic growth in the future.

“We continue to expand our relationships with larger clients who increasingly recognise the benefits of Knights’ premium, diversified offering and collaborative, corporatised model.

“Whilst mindful of macroeconomic conditions, trading in the second half is in line with the Board’s expectations and we continue to focus on driving organic growth and efficiency, providing a strong platform for future acquisitions.”