Accounting and business advisory firm HURST has announced two new partner appointments.
Ben Bradley and James Thompson, who work in HURST’s corporate finance and tax teams respectively, have been promoted from associate partner level.
Ben joined HURST as a graduate trainee in September 2011 following a 12-month university placement. He qualified as a chartered accountant in 2014 while working in the business services team, then joined the corporate finance team in 2015 following a secondment in the United States.
He has progressed through the ranks to manager, associate director and then associate partner, which gave him a seat on the HURST board.
Ben has advised on transactions with a total deal value of over £1bn. These include company acquisitions and disposals, raising growth capital, management buyouts and takeovers by employee ownership trusts, across sectors including food, pharmaceuticals, IT services, engineering, manufacturing, healthcare, consultancy and marketing.
His transaction highlights include advising on the 2016 sale of Comms-care, a north west based provider of outsourced IT services, to Fortune 500 company Ingram Micro in a deal worth more than £50m. James also advised on this deal.
In 2021 Ben advised The Sun Valley Nut Company, a Wirral-based supplier of high-quality peanut and nut-based snacking products through the private label, food service and food ingredients channels, on its sale to Germany-headquartered food group Zertus.
Last year he advised Stockport-based Red Rose Packaging on the company’s sale to Logson Group, UK’s largest independent supplier of corrugated packaging.
James joined HURST in 2015 and has more than 20 years’ experience. He was promoted to associate partner in 2019 from senior manager.
He provides tax advice to family and owner-managed businesses and is a specialist in research and development tax credits which save his clients thousands of pounds.
James also advises a number of private equity owned companies and is well-versed in the tax challenges that arise as a result of the PE ownership model.
HURST partner and head of the tax team Liz Gallagher said: “James has been an integral part of the tax advisory team for the last seven years. He has a passion for tax and uses his expertise to provide exceptional advice to our entrepreneurial clients.
“His promotion to partner is well deserved. He is a great example of someone who has worked hard to become a key member of the team.
“He adds greatly to our capabilities and has been instrumental in our strong growth over recent years.
“I look forward to working alongside James and the other partners as we continue to enjoy unprecedented growth.”
Nigel Barratt, a HURST partner and head of the firm’s corporate finance team, said: “I’m delighted that Ben has been promoted to partner. It’s particularly pleasing as Ben started his career with HURST and it’s been very rewarding to see him develop into a superb corporate financier who has worked on some fantastic transactions.
“Ben typifies the HURST ethos by delivering outstanding client service and providing high-quality commercial advice to our clients.”