Senior Gateley partners make almost half a million each in £10m share sale

Gateley lawyers have sold almost £10m worth of shares in the AIM-listed firm, with five senior partners including CEO Michael Ward (pictured) and COO Peter Davies recouping close to £500,000 each.

According to a London Stock exchange filing, shareholders in the firm have sold 6,641,333 shares at a price of £1.50, equating to a total value of £9.96m.

Both Ward and Davies sold 328,900 shares in the firm, earning them £493,350. The same amount of shares were also sold by London head Paul Hayward and City corporate restructuring partner Brendan McGeever.

Other partners to have sold a significant number of shares include Birmingham real estate partner Callum Nuttall (£434,860), Manchester managing partner Rod Waldie (£296,010) and London corporate partner Nick Smith (£210,960).

National corporate head Tom Durrant and group HR Director Victoria Garrad sold shares valued at £94,971 and £94,491 respectively, while two directors acquired shares – finance director Neil Smith, who bought 20,000 shares for £30,000, and recently appointed non-executive director Suki Thompson, who acquired 10,000 shares for £15,000.

According to the filing, the shares sold represent 6.21% of the total issued shares in the firm, with institutional investors buying 6,333,334 and Gateley employees buying 307,999.

The filing states that on Gateley’s admission to AIM in June 2015, its former partners held 70% of the enlarged share capital of the firm. They agreed to enter into a five-year lock-in deal which allowed them to dispose up to 10% of their shares in any 12-month period after the first anniversary of the admission.

Last October, partners sold 5,761,971 shares at a price of £1.11, amounting to a total of £6.4m.

Ward has now made the most money from share sales since the 2015 float, selling a combined £858,429 worth of shares. Three other partners have sold more than £800,000 worth of shares – Hayward, McGeever and Davies, who have made £857,430, £848,550 and £826,350 respectively.

Nuttall has now sold £756,657 of shares since the float, while Waldie has made £515,057.

The 2015 float raised £30m, with partners taking £25m and the firm keeping £5m.

Gateley recently announced double-digit increases in revenue and profit to the London Stock Exchange, in its second set of annual results since the landmark float, when it became the first law firm to successfully list on the London Stock Exchange.