Roberts Jackson

Roberts Jackson is a fast-growing Cheshire-based law firm specialising in industrial diseases that wanted to take advantage of the new legislation around alternative business structures by securing private equity funding for further growth. NorthEdge Capital were keen to invest, but the financial due diligence process had stalled; Roberts Jackson had never had a CFO, but without one it was unlikely that the deal would be able to complete.

In December 2013 Watson Moore was engaged jointly by Roberts Jackson and NorthEdge to assist in the appointment of a CFO.  The remit was to find an experienced CFO who was used to working with external stakeholders and who could bring a new level of professionalism to the finances and create a quality management information capability.

Utilising our comprehensive knowledge of the market and extensive network of FD’s/CFO’s, Watson Moore was able to identify a number of high calibre candidates who matched the requirements of both NorthEdge Capital and Roberts Jackson.

Ultimately, Nick Townend was appointed to the position, bringing with him more than 10 years’ experience as a Finance Director leading a number of businesses that were either AIM-listed or backed by private equity (e.g. Blackstone, LDC, ECI), including most recently the successful exit of the ECI backed software business Ascribe that was sold to EMIS plc in September 2013.

Following Nick’s appointment at the end of January 2014, in July 2014 Roberts Jackson successfully secured £15 million in funding from NorthEdge Capital; the money is intended to facilitate the “acceleration of growth and development” of the industrial diseases practice and to “open up new opportunities in the legal services sector”.

Amongst Nick’s remit is the task of expanding and strengthening the Finance team  to facilitate the planned growth in the business, and Watson Moore has worked closely with him to start to build a high calibre finance function. Since summer 2014 we have been retained by Roberts Jackson to recruit a number of individuals, including a Financial Controller, an Assistant Accountant, an Accounts Assistant, and a Credit Controller, on either a permanent or a  temporary basis.

Roberts Jackson is a prime example of Watson Moore’s ability to assist businesses in recruiting the full spectrum of finance positions; from Director and CFO appointments to junior and transactional roles.

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Nick Townend, CFO: “This is the third time that Watson Moore have been instrumental in successfully introducing me to a CFO role in the private equity environment.  I have always been very impressed by their understanding of the market, and by their ability to assess the inter-personal fit necessary in such roles as well as the technical PE/CFO requirements of the roles.  Their knowledge of what is required from Finance in a private equity environment makes them an ideal partner now that I am recruiting to my team.”