NAHL Group: Granting of ABS Licence
NAHL, the leading UK consumer marketing business focused on the UK legal services market, is pleased to announce that following granting of an Alternative Business Structure (ABS) licence by the Solicitors Regulation Authority, the Group has signed an agreement with NewLaw, a wholly owned subsidiary of Redde plc. The ABS will trade under the name Your Law LLP. It is expected that the ABS will commence on 1st July 2017.
As previously announced, following the Government’s consultation first unveiled in November 2015 into the PI market, the Group consulted with its Panel Law Firms (PLFs) and opted to continue with the strategic decision taken in 2016 to invest in dealing with a proportion of its enquiries through different commercial and structural arrangements to those normally deployed.
The ABS will allow NAHL to have an ownership interest in a company providing legal services and the agreement with NewLaw will enable NAHL to participate in that venture and take a share of profit from work processed by the ABS.
Our forthcoming relaunch of the National Accident Helpline (NAH) brand is expected to increase our market share and this ABS, along with similar such ventures, will enable us to place the incremental enquiries generated by this increased investment. It is anticipated that in the coming years ABS structures will account for up to 30% of our total enquiries.
As a result of NAHL now being the controller of an SRA regulated entity, the Board will be writing to all shareholders to explain the implications for them. This advice will also be published on the Group’s website in due course. The principle issue that shareholders should be aware of is that under The Legal Services Act 2007 the Group may be required to seek approval from the SRA in the event a shareholder acquires a holding of 10 per cent or more of the Group’s ordinary shares or voting rights.
Russell Atkinson, CEO of NAHL, commented:
“We are delighted to have entered into this agreement with a partner of NewLaw’s industry standing. The setting up of this ABS is a positive development in executing the Group’s strategic plans to advance its business model and prepare the division for the PI market changes announced by the Government in February 2017.
NAH has been working together with NewLaw since December 2015 on a trial basis with a view to setting up Your Law and the Board is confident in the anticipated performance and impact that this ABS will have for the Group.
Our Panel Law Firm partners remain central to our plans. The ABS will enable us to grow our share of the PI market, whilst continuing to provide high quality marketing services to them as well as offering trusted and professional legal advice to consumers.”