Private Equity law transformed

Our sole purpose is to make businesses more valuable.

We’re a specialist boutique practice that forges successful long-term partnerships with the best Private Equity investors, high-performing portfolio companies and ambitious management teams seeking funding.

Our high-calibre team and unique delivery model can support you across the entire investment cycle, from sourcing and completing deals to building and protecting stakeholder value.

From our base in London, gunnercooke Private Equity’s entrepreneurial approach is redefining the relationship between legal services and mid-market Private Equity.

We’re 100% focused on outcomes and will help you build market-leading companies that deliver exceptional performance and returns.

Read on for more detail around the difference we make and the career opportunities available for talented practitioners and consultants.


A growth-focused approach

We deliver far more than just M&A legal services.

We’ll help you facilitate growth by providing access to new opportunities and expertise that spans the full range of Corporate Finance and Commercial disciplines.

gunnercooke Private Equity’s deep specialism and broad capabilities are underpinned by the firm’s reputation for quality, commerciality and innovation.

Your immediate requirements and longer-term strategic objectives will be supported by:

  • A dedicated senior team with over 150 years combined Private Equity and management experience.
  • Off market introductions to gunnercooke’s 15,000-strong client base for buyout, acquisition and exit opportunities.
  • A diverse network of 56 Operating Partners who can advise on, and participate in, transactions and portfolio growth strategies.
  • Cost effective ‘on-demand’ access to a pool of 250 multi-disciplinary legal practitioners.
  • Guaranteed service levels, a transparent fee structure and a Partner remuneration model which ensures their interests closely align with investors and management teams.

Our disruptive approach to mid-market professional services is proven effective. It has underpinned our own rapid growth over the last decade and is key to achieving a level of client satisfaction that sees gunnercooke maintain a Net Promoter Score (NPS) of over 85.

Get in touch to find out more about how we can help you secure deals on the best terms and drive commercial improvement in Private Equity-backed businesses.


Geared to your priorities

gunnercooke Private Equity is a dedicated team comprising highly experienced Private Equity transactional and fund lawyers, corporate financiers, debt advisory professionals, commercial and strategic due diligence specialists and Operating Partners with significant senior management experience.

We provide a responsive service that can support you across the investment cycle:

Sourcing deals Completing deals Building & protecting value
Business Development
Access our 15,000-strong client base of mid-market businesses to source exclusive off market investment and exit opportunities.
Transaction Support
Rely on Private Equity practitioners with the knowledge and experience to maintain momentum and deliver optimal outcomes.
Impact Non-Execs
Strengthen your consultant and Non-Exec pool with access to diverse talent via our unique Operating Partner deployment model.
Expansive Network
Tap into a 300+ group of professionals and Non-Execs who are highly regarded and well connected across London, UK regional and international markets.
Focused Due Diligence
Quickly gain valuable insight and analysis into target businesses using a streamlined process led by industry experts and specialist practitioners.
Legal Services
Enhance and protect value in portfolio businesses with ‘on demand’ access to 250 professionals covering a broad range of commercial disciplines.

Innovative services

The demands of mid-market Private Equity requires a more agile, commercial approach than traditional law firms deliver.

Entrepreneurialism is at the heart of gunnercooke Private Equity and we’ve developed a range of services designed to meet the needs of investors and ambitious management teams. 

Get in touch if you want to understand more about how our innovative services can help you originate opportunities, deliver successful transactions and support high performing management teams.

New Business Development – Leveraging client relationships

Advisors should always look beyond the transaction to recognise opportunities which stimulate deal flow and support long-term value creation.

gunnercooke Private Equity has the contacts, credibility and market understanding that makes us a highly effective introducer.

Our New Business Development service focuses on:

  • Active introductions – Facilitating high quality, off market opportunities within the firm’s 15,000-strong diverse client base of mid-sized businesses.
  • Intermediary insight – Harnessing strong C-suite relationships and a comprehensive understanding of client businesses to identify relevant and timely opportunities.
  • Best fit – Pre-qualifying introductions against an investor’s focus, criteria and portfolio.

In addition to being trusted advisors, gunnercooke’s 250-strong network of Partners

share a strong business development culture and are appropriately incentivised to source new investment opportunities.

Impact Executives – Flexible strategic support

We recognise the limitations of how Non-Execs are traditionally used in Private Equity, particularly given the pace and scale of growth required.

gunnercooke Private Equity has a unique model which enables you to deploy multiple Impact Executives, introducing knowledge and expertise that is most relevant to the investment stage or business need.

Our Impact Executive service provides:

  • An expanded network – Access to our group of 56 Operating Partners. This diverse pool of highly experienced management talent has experience that spans sectors, scenarios and specialisms (e.g. digital transformation, internationalisation, strategic sales and marketing, product development, turnaround, exits, IPOs).
  • A flexible deployment model You can temporarily harness consultant and Non-Executive input in line with the focus of your investment strategy, introducing ‘best fit’ expertise that aligns to specific challenges, opportunities or phases of growth.
  • Appropriate incentivisation – Our cost-effective fee structure and an innovative equity vehicle enables flexible Non-Executive participation and fair distribution upon divestment.

gunnercooke Private Equity Impact Executives will extend and refresh your talent pool, helping support management teams by injecting fresh enthusiasm and valuable perspectives as and when it is needed.

Transaction Support – Accelerate time to success

The last thing you need is an inexperienced, under-resourced legal team slowing down transactions or charging high fees whilst providing sub-standard service and quality control.

gunnercooke Private Equity has the specialist skills and appreciation of the wider investment context to consistently deliver to the highest standards and against demanding timescales.

Our efficient Transaction Support services are underpinned by:

  • The best talent – Your deal will be supported by a dedicated senior team with the experience and capacity to accelerate the process and identify opportunities or risk.
  • Proven processes – Our relationship will be structured around a robust governance and engagement process with stage gates, milestone reviews and detailed evaluation and measurement.
  • Quality assurance – We provide transparent fees and a guarantee that you don’t have to pay in the unlikely event you are not happy with the service we deliver.

gunnercooke Private Equity also provides managed access to the firms’ 250-strong team of Partners, whose multidisciplinary expertise covers all aspects of commercial law (e.g. employment, patent, intellectual, property, environment real estate, environmental, technology, restructuring international).

Our dynamic approach ensures you can draw on this specialist support within the context of the Private Equity relationship and with no need for time-intensive knowledge transfer or separate agreements.

Focused Due Diligence – Straight to the point

Whilst effective due diligence is vital in a volatile environment, too often it is a slow, onerous process, generating a high volume of information but no immediate insight on the priority needs of a business.

Ahead of full due diligence gunnercooke Private Equity can deploy a combination of professionals to quickly get under the skin of a business, using their experience and intuition to zero in on areas of risk or opportunity and produce a focused report with actionable insights.

Our Focused Due Diligence provides:

  • An expert eye: Senior independent sector experts will engage with management in target businesses to identify priorities for further analysis.
  • A deeper dive: Operational Partners can draw on additional ‘light touch’ analysis by our wider network of practitioners and consultants to interrogate key areas in more detail (e.g. litigation, property, IT, culture).
  • Actionable insights: The process results in a highly focused 10-page report which can be used to inform strategy and the full Due Diligence process.

We will also ensure you can continue leveraging our Operational Partners and legal expertise throughout the transaction process and investment.

Vanguard Leadership Programmes

The most important task of a leader is to make the company more valuable. To become a vanguard company. The best companies in almost all cases have the best leaders. High levels of business performance come with innovation, efficiencies, profit and social good. It is possible for the acceleration of performance required by a private equity or investment house to come with strong resilient cultures and the leaving of a positive mark on the world.

Investment companies seek to maximise the value of their investment over a five plus period of ownership. It requires good and knowledgeable leadership to do this well. Added to the mix now is the demand from suppliers and customers, generation z and millennials (now accounting for 75% of the world population) to do social good. This demand is played out on social media.

Leadership is everything, and success of the business and the investment will come down to the ability of the leader. Many CEOs have grown up with the business without access to high level leadership training. CEOs with a growth or infinite mindset will provide great leadership.

gunnercooke Operating Partners have launched leadership programmes for CEO’s over the first 100 days of a private equity investment. Maintenance programmes are also run during the life of an investment if required. The programme is designed to educate and mentor the CEO for the journey ahead.

Our programmes are specifically designed with knowledge obtained from the due diligence exercise undertaken by the private equity house, including the management due diligence on the CEO and his or her team, along with discussions with the CEO and the investor. The programme could include a personal consulting session with a Harvard Business School professor, a prescribed literature review (agreed with the HBR professor), mentoring programme, and a series of specific learning sessions including a focus on ensuring that social responsibility leads to profit. In addition, our offering includes the facilitation of a virtual board with other CEOs from the investor’s portfolio that meet periodically to stimulate innovation and discover actionable solutions that accelerate professional development.

It can also be a useful addition to an investors armoury when winning an investment. CEOs are more likely to consider investors who are prepared to invest in and support their development. Costs are dependent on the programme and will be part of the transaction costs.

More on us

Darryl is one of the mid-market’s most experienced and well-connected lawyers. Over 25 years he’s forged a reputation for quality and commerciality whilst building and leading the Private Equity practices at SJ Berwin, Addleshaw Goddard, DLA Piper and now gunnercooke.

He is the author of ‘Private Equity: Law and Practice’, which is widely regarded as a key resource for practitioners and is now in its 7th edition.

More than a career

gunnercooke Private Equity is transforming how professional services are delivered in the mid-market.

With a culture that rewards value creation, we are attracting the best M&A talent from across a range of disciplines.

If you’re looking to leave behind a restrictive and frustrating working environment, then it’s time we spoke.

We’re a new generation of firm where you will enjoy:

  • Remuneration directly linked to the value you deliver – Our structure enables 70%-80% retention of earnings, with over 95% of partners earning more than they did previously (and in many cases by a factor of three or four).
  • A modern outlook – Innovation and commerciality are encouraged at every opportunity to help you become a successful businessperson as well as a leading professional.
  • Flexible working practices – We know that having complete control over your work-life balance and career will lead to better outcomes for you and your clients.
  • Being part of something bigger – It’s an opportunity to collaborate, exchange knowledge and socialise with a huge pool of driven, entrepreneurial professionals.

We’re looking for passionate people with a proven track record of delivering high-quality legal and professional services within the Private Equity space.

Get in touch if you are a confident, ambitious, credible and proactive professional who is focused on immediate strategic client outcomes, but also able to consider the wider context.

Let’s have an informal, confidential conversation where we can talk through gunnercooke Private Equity in more detail and see how it aligns with your personal and career aspirations.