Crowe and Herrington Carmichael support investment and restructure of Wessex Woodland Management

Jane Mackay Crowe

Wessex Woodland Management, a bespoke woodland management services provider, recently instructed national audit, tax, advisory and risk firm Crowe and Law Firm Herrington Carmichael, to advise on structuring a strategic investment from third party investors, which resulted in a corporate re-organisation and enabled the shareholders of the business to realise value that they have accrued in the business over the 30 years since its inception in 1993.

Crowe’s Head of Tax, Jane Mackay and Corporate Tax Director, Tiina Weekes oversaw the tax structuring of the investment and re-organisation, enabling the shareholders to realise the value accrued and to create a structure that will allow employees to invest in the ownership of the business in a tax-efficient manner.

Jane Mackay commented: ”It was a real pleasure to work with the owners of Wessex Woodland Management and Herrington Carmichael on a structure that allowed them to achieve their personal ambitions of realising value from a third party investment and providing a way for employees to invest in the business in a tax-efficient and affordable way.”

Yavan Brar and Chris Gemson from the Corporate Team at Herrington Carmichael provided advice on the legal structure and drafted the tax structure proposed by Crowe, which included advice provided on a complex earn-out structure and advice in structuring an incentivisation plan for employees of the business. Michelle Lamberth assisted with the corporate governance aspects of the transaction.

Yavan Brar, Partner, Head of Corporate and Commercial at Herrington Carmichael said: ”A great project to have been involved in, being able to support an innovative owner managed business with their plans for growth. Our thanks to the team at Crowe for their excellent support and I am sure that Wessex Woodland Management will continue to grow and prosper – we wish them well.”

Both Crowe and Herrington Carmichael provided timely support on the transaction which enabled a completion prior to the 2021 Budget. The investment received will enable the business to continue its exponential growth over the coming years with the additional support of the third-party investors and the participation of employees as shareholders.

David Hunt, Director of Wessex Woodland Management, said: “Crowe and Herrington Carmichael provided high-quality advice and support in enabling us to complete the restructure and investment. Jane and Tiina were invaluable in helping explain the tax implications of the structure in a clear and concise manner, and Yavan and Chris guided us smoothly through the transaction providing expert advice and demonstrating great professionalism throughout. We are delighted with the outcome and our thanks go to the Crowe and Herrington Carmichael teams.”

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