Mills & Reeve enhances its commercial and education offering in Leeds with new partner

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Leading national law firm Mills & Reeve appoints renowned commercial partner Martin Priestley.

Senior commercial lawyer Martin Priestley is joining Mills & Reeve from Pinsent Masons, where he was lead partner for both the commercial team in the Leeds office and for the international universities practice. 

Martin is well-known in the business community in Leeds and across the UK in the higher education sector. He regularly advises a range of major corporate, government and university clients both in the UK and internationally. Over his career, Martin has gained a huge amount of experience advising on transformational commercial transactions often with an international dimension. 

Martin, who officially joins on 1 January 2018, is also a regular commentator and speaker on the impact of Brexit and the internationalisation of higher education. He has recently advised university clients on major projects in continental Europe, the Middle East and Asia. 

Gary Attle, partner and head of education and governance, said: “Martin is a fantastic fit for Mills & Reeve. His commercial experience in acting for businesses and universities will enhance the service we can provide to all our clients, both new and existing, and will help us achieve our aim of growing our already thriving practice in the North and North West. 

“Mills & Reeve has a market leading reputation in the education sector. Our sector knowledge and commercial experience gives us the opportunity to support our clients with significant transactions across the education sector. Our recent work for a number of universities has included raising capital for significant infrastructure projects. Martin’s appointment will enable us to offer our clients an unparalleled service in the region, and beyond.” 

Mills & Reeve is making a concerted effort to strengthen its already impressive Leeds commercial team and this lateral hire further reinforces the firm’s strategy to devote more resources to the North and North West. Martin is the latest in a series of appointments for the Manchester and Leeds offices, with real estate partners Mike Edge and Rachel Pitman also joining from Pinsent Masons. 

Philip Way, partner and head of the Leeds office, said: “We have been concentrating on building our reputation in Leeds and the North West, and this appointment underscores our investments in the office. I’m delighted to welcome Martin to the firm and I believe he will make a real impact and help us to further bolster the fantastic service we can offer. 

“Martin’s dual commercial and education experience is a perfect complement to the expertise we already have in the business and the type of work we are currently doing. I and the rest of the team are looking forward to working with Martin and supporting our clients in the region with an enhanced offering.” 

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