Law firm Gateley to expand into Belfast with promise of 73 jobs

Top media lawyer Paul Tweed is part of Gateley, which is establishing an operation in Belfast, creating 73 jobs
Gary McDonald Business Editor

THE Birmingham-based legal and professional services group which earlier this year acquired top libel lawyer Paul Tweed's firm says it plans to create 73 jobs in Belfast.

Gateley, the first UK commercial law firm to float on the London stock market, already employs 1,100 staff across 11 offices in Britain and another in Dubai.

The company provides legal services to more than 5,000 clients across banking and financial services, corporate, business services, employment and pensions and property.

It already has a modest presence at Imperial House in Donegall Square East, but anticipates a period of stellar growth.

Its introduction to Belfast has been boosted by financial assistance of £438,000 from Invest NI.

In addition to setting up a new legal practice, the company has on-boarded the team from Paul Tweed to create Gateley Tweed, specialising in international media law.

Mr Tweed, who has acted for numerous celebrities and senior political figures, is now a partner in Gateley Tweed.

Gately partner Michael Ward said: “Our staff are one of our biggest assets and when we were considering expansion, it was important it was a location that would offer us not only a competitive cost base but the right type of talent.

“We're delighted to have chosen Northern Ireland, which is a vibrant and exciting place with skilled legal professionals and boasts excellent universities which generate first class graduates. We very much look forward to expanding and investing in a team here.”

Economy minister Diane Dodds welcome the investment by Gateley, which last year grew its revenues by 20 per cent to more than £103 million.

She said: “Out legal sector is vibrant, internationally focused and has grown significantly over the last 10 years, and it's great to see that even during challenging times Northern Ireland continues to attract top law firms.

“Gateley will be creating a new legal and professional services team in Belfast, offering high quality employment and the opportunity to work with its international portfolio of clients.

“Once established, the new practice will create job opportunities with an estimated £2.8 million in additional annual salaries for the Northern Ireland economy.”

Commenting on the acquisition of his Belfast business in March, Mr Tweed said: “I'm very much looking forward to working with the Gateley team. The extensive expertise and full legal service that Gateley provide will significantly enhance our offering to clients.”

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