Harper Macleod’s corporate dealmakers record £50m lockdown surge



Paula Skinner

The corporate team at Harper Macleod is on course to complete more than 30 deals worth over £50 million during the lockdown period – in a positive sign that corporate Scotland is still open for business.

Since the UK’s lockdown began on 23 March, the firm’s team has completed 12 deals remotely, with around 20 more due to complete before the end of April.

Among those, Harper Macleod advised lead investor Par Equity – the Edinburgh based venture capital firm – on the recent deal which saw subsea clean energy specialists EC-OG receive £1.6m from an investment consortium.

Paula Skinner, partner at Harper Macleod, said: “The Par Equity deal is just one of series of significant deals our team has managed to get over the line for clients despite the current situation.

“The lockdown has actually coincided with one of the busiest periods we’ve had in recent years, and we have some even larger transactions set to complete over the next few weeks. It’s encouraging that we’ve seen quite a lot of investments, some of them completely new ones and some further rounds of investment.”

Ms Skinner also highlighted the challenges that lockdown posed to getting deals done.

She said: “When everyone in the team is working from home, completing a team is much more stressful than usual. In normal circumstances you are able to print every document and pore over them collectively, but doing that onscreen at home takes longer and is difficult to get used to. It’s all about adapting to the changed environment, using different tools to communicate and collaborate, and trying to find the most efficient way to get things done.

“We’re finding that the majority of clients and other lawyers are willing to take a pragmatic approach just now and everyone is working together to deliver the best outcome and to get the deal done.”



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