Commercial Property lawyer Helen Willett recently returned to Coodes Solicitors as a Partner and Head of Business Services. She comments on the firm’s commitment to its business clients across the South West and beyond.
I spent the first 18 years of my career in London where, working for city firm SJ Berwin, I advised on a number of multi-million-pound property deals. I have been in West Cornwall since I first joined Coodes in 2012 and firmly believe that if you are running an SME here your needs are no less complex than those of a large corporation in the capital.
The current climate is, of course, creating new challenges for Cornish businesses.
It is becoming a cliché to say that these are ‘uncertain’ times for businesses. However, here in Cornwall many businesses have previously benefited from EU funding and are working out what life will be like post-Brexit. A number of our clients are looking at alternative means of raising finance – whether that is peer-to-peer lending or outside investment – to replace the funding they have previously relied on. In the Commercial Property team, we are advising clients who want to push deals through before we leave the EU.
Perhaps now, more than ever before, Cornwall’s businesses need to have access to the full range of specialist legal advice.
And while these may be uncertain times, we are seeing growth, particularly in the tourism and hospitality sector. We are advising on a growing number of deals involving high end holiday parks, glamping sites, restaurants and pubs, many of which are attracting outside investment.
We know that many of our clients want to appoint a lawyer based in Cornwall. Although they will undoubtedly appreciate the face-to-face contact that comes with appointing a local lawyer, we know that supporting local business is also a driver. In fact, we find that a number of clients based outside the county seek our advice to buy properties here, not only appreciating our local knowledge but wanting to support the local economy.
When our clients come to us asking for advice on a specific issue, we often discover that they need legal expertise on something else. For example, as we guide them through a share sale for their business, we might uncover unresolved issues with the structure of their family business. Or, as we support them through moving to a new premises, we might discover that they need employment advice to bring their contracts up to date.
That is the reason why at Coodes we offer a full service to corporate clients. As Head of Business Services, I am committed to ensuring businesses get access to the full range of our expert advice. Whether it is an employment dispute in Penzance, or the restructuring of a large business in Holsworthy, our Business Services team has all the specialist expertise It is our role to identify what specialist advice each business needs and to make it as smooth and easy as possible for them to access it.
For Commercial Property information or advice, please contact Helen Willett on firstname.lastname@example.org or 01736 362294 or another member of the Commercial Property team. Please contact any member of the Business Services team for business advice.