Buoyant by double-digit revenue growth, DWF goes for overseas acquisitions
Overcoming a turbulent year, DWF announced two acquisitions in UK and Canada backed by a 120 per cent profit
The Manchester-based global law firm DWF has bounced back overcoming a turbulent year impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic by announcing two major acquisitions, one each in UK and Canada.
The buoyant mood in the firm is a direct outcome of a 13 per cent revenue increase with profits going up by a staggering 120 per cent.
The turnover hit £338 million for its financial year to 30 April, with adjusted profit before tax of £34 million. This exceeded the market expectation by 15 per cent. The organic growth registered an increase of eight per cent during the same period.
DWF declaration of the results coincided with the same-day announcement about two bolt-ons to its specialist business solutions division. It is paying £1.8 million for UK-based compliance training business Zing 365 Holdings and £2.2 million for Canadian claims and loss adjusting business of Barnescraig & Associates.
The news regarding surging profits and new acquisitions marked the anniversary of its long-standing chief executive Andrew Leaitherland's resignation and his replacement by the then-chairman Sir Nigel Knowles as DWF went for the strong and experienced leadership after it had to revise its expected revenue growth for the second time in as many months.
This followed several cost-cutting measures that included the closures of its Singapore and Brussels offices and cutting down on its Australian operations. These measures helped the firm to report a reduction of its net debt at year-end by four million pounds to £61 million from £65 million in 2020.
"We have grown the business, transformed our profitability, improved our operational efficiency and strengthened our balance sheet notwithstanding the impact of Covid-19 during the year," said Knowles, adding that these results are testament to the resilience, dedication and excellence shown by the firm's colleagues right across the business.
DWF had launched Connected Services in 2017 to further diversify its offering. It has announced that now it expects the two bolt-ons to add a combined £3 million in revenue and £0.5 million of adjusted profit before tax in 2022.
The Vancouver-based Barnescraig & Associates, which was established more than three decades ago, has a team of 25 claims and loss adjusting specialists who will be joining DWF's existing business solutions network to balance its claims and loss adjusting business in Toronto.
"We already have a well-established claims management and adjusting business in Toronto and wanted to increase our geographical coverage across Canada to the West Coast," Jason Ford, head of Connected Services, said.