National firm Parabis Group today confirmed that it is in talks with other firms over selling parts of the business amid reports that its private equity owner is seeking to recoup its investment.
The Sunday Times yesterday reported that Parabis, owned by private equity firm Duke Street Capital since 2012, is in talks with national firms about offloading its personal injury firm Plexus Law. The Gazette understands Irwin Mitchell, one of the firms named, is not among those who have had discussions.
Duke Street Capital has invested more than £200m in Parabis since 2012. The alternative business structure is considered one of the pioneers of the liberalised market created by the Legal Services Act 2007.
In a statement, Parabis said it has undertaken a strategic review of its business over the past six months against the backdrop of ‘unprecedented’ regulatory change and legal reform.
The review is designed to identify what services the firm should offer and how best to structure the business.
The statement added: ‘In thinking about the future, we took the strategic decision to have discreet discussions with other like-minded businesses to weigh up all options properly. Some of these discussions are continuing.’
Parabis said its staff and clients will be the first to hear the outcome of any sale discussions.
According to company accounts filed last December, covering the 2013/14 year ending 31 March 2014, income fell from £12.1m to £8.9m, with profits down from £8.5m to £5.1m.
In November 2014, Parabis agreed revised financing arrangements which led to Duke Street providing an additional £13m.
Parabis Law LLP is the Solicitors Regulation Authority-regulated entity, under which sit Plexus Law, Greenwoods and Cogent Law.
The group has made a series of cutbacks and spending reductions in the last year, cutting dozens of secretarial jobs and closing offices in Bristol (pictured) and Colchester.