Shoosmiths announces Northern Ireland presence following merger with Belfast firm

Shoosmiths announces Northern Ireland presence following merger with Belfast firm


Author: Kara Shadbolt

Shoosmiths - a leading national law firm - has today announced its move in to the Northern Ireland legal market following its merger with Belfast firm, McManus Kearney.

  • Merger brings total of Shoosmiths offices to 12
  • Move is motivated by client demand for UK wide service delivery
  • Belfast firm has special focus on debt recovery and insolvency

The top 40 law firm - which in addition has eleven other offices in England and Scotland - was prompted to move into Northern Ireland as a commitment to providing a 'truly national' service for clients of its tier one-ranked recoveries services group (Legal 500). The firm will offer recoveries services and commercial advice from the new location.

Founded in 1987, McManus Kearney has specialist expertise in debt and insolvency matters in Northern Ireland. The firm will be known as 'Shoosmiths' from today, and its two partners - Mary Frances Kearney, Jason Byrne - and 14 staff will remain at McManus Kearney's Belfast office at Lesley Suites, 2-12 Montgomery Street.

Claire Rowe, Shoosmiths' chief executive, said: 'Our opening in Northern Ireland is symbolic of our commitment to our clients across the UK and ensuring our award-winning commercial and recoveries services are the very best on offer. The move was motivated by client demand and by our wish to have a commercial presence in Northern Ireland as a result of the complex work we undertake in recoveries and commercial financial services. It is a pleasure to bring Shoosmiths to Northern Ireland, through a well-known, trusted and successful business such as McManus Kearney.'

Waine Mannix, Shoosmiths' head of recoveries services, said: 'McManus Kearney has an excellent, longstanding reputation in the Northern Ireland and UK market for financial services recoveries, personal insolvency, commercial contracts and HNW private client work. The Shoosmiths recoveries services group has worked with McManus Kearney for a number of years, sharing places on clients' panels and through instructing the firm. Each time the firm has demonstrated we share the same values - the pinnacle being our commitment to providing exceptional client service.'

Mary Frances Kearney, added: 'We have known of and worked with Shoosmiths for a long time. It's a terrific cultural fit. The firm's reputation in the recoveries market is exemplary and Shoosmiths as a whole has an unsurpassed reputation for client service. We are thrilled to be a part of Shoosmiths after working very hard to build our successful business over 30 years and look forward to playing a part in building Shoosmiths' presence in Northern Ireland.'

Shoosmiths' partner Stephen Dawson, who leads the firm's Financial Services advisory team, will also lend his support to the growth and development of the new office, given that he already lives in Northern Ireland.

Shoosmiths has offices in Birmingham, Edinburgh, London, Manchester, Reading, Milton Keynes, Northampton, Nottingham, Southampton and Basingstoke. The firm opened its Leeds office on 1 December, 2016.