Top 100 firms reveals plans to double in size

The newly appointed Managing Partner of Top 100 law firm Ward Hadaway has boldly announced plans for the firm to double in size over the next ten years.

The Newcastle headquartered firm recently announced Steven Petrie as its new Managing Partner following in the footsteps of Martin Hulls who had led the firm for six years. Petrie, who has been a partner at Ward Hadaway for twelve years, began his three year term on 1st April 2024 having previously headed up the Commercial Dispute Resolution Department and was appointed Deputy Managing Partner for the last year in preparation for the step up. On his appointment, Petrie says

“I am extremely excited and honoured to take on the mantle of Managing Partner and I’m looking forward to building on the firm’s proud heritage built over more than 35 years. The management board and I have very clear ambitions for the firm, that I am keen to articulate and advocate internally and externally.

adding that his ambition is to grow the firm ‘by over 50% within the next five years, and 100% in 10, in order to leverage our scale to continue to support organisations of all shapes and sizes.’

Ward Hadaway was founded in 1988 and has grown to over 500 staff providing services to clients including housebuilders and affordable housing providers, media and tech, manufacturing, life sciences and professional services. It also works for a range of public sector and public funded organisations in health, local authority and education, as well as acting for private individuals, from its offices in Newcastle, Leeds and Manchester.

“A fundamental element of our strategy is that we maintain our independence. I understand that passionate people make a difference, and I am committed to continuing to lead a firm which supports and challenges everyone to be their best. Our values of straightforward, respectful and ambitious will define our culture internally and for our clients, in addition to steering the impact we have on the North of England’s economy and the communities in which we operate.”

Continued Petrie, adding

“It should be a given for a firm of our size and standing, with such a long and proud history of giving back to the communities in which we live and work, that we will continue to innovate and push hard on our ESG agenda. It remains a fundamental passion of mine to ensure generous investments in social value projects, involvement in programmes that encourage social mobility and the diversity of the workforce, active support of our people and their development, and initiatives to reduce the environmental impact of our firm.

“Martin has successfully charted the firm through an incredibly testing economic and sociological period. Thanks to his hands-on leadership the firm has not only achieved consistent growth in every year he has been at the helm, but also smoothly transitioned us to a hybrid working environment, attracted new talent at all levels, and invested in technology and processes to enable us to continue to deliver exceptional client service. The firm is enormously grateful for his tireless efforts, particularly during a period of such challenge and change.”

Outgoing Managing Partner Martin Hull concludes,

“Being Managing Partner at Ward Hadaway has been an honour and a privilege. With Steven’s energy, strategic leadership and passion, I very much look forward to seeing the firm continue to grow and expand.”

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