Inspiring Business by Sharing Success

Ambitious accountancy firm adds to group in deal backed by Allied Irish Bank (GB)

An ambitious South Yorkshire-headquartered accountancy firm has made the latest in a series of mergers in a deal backed by Allied Irish Bank (GB)*.

Sutton McGrath Hartley (SMH), a multi-disciplinary accountancy firm with offices in Sheffield, Rotherham, Chesterfield and Buxton, has merged with long-established accountants Haywood & Co, which has offices in Sheffield, Rotherham and Knaresborough.

Formed in 1995, SMH is led by partners James Hartley, Jonathon Dickens and Simon Turner and provides a wide spectrum of financial, legal and tax advisory services to business and private clients across South Yorkshire, Derbyshire and the High Peak. SMH’s latest deal comes on the back of its merger with Buxton accountancy practice BullockWoodburn in 2018.

Haywood & Co originated in 1961 and is headed up by Joe Midgley, Paul Hebblethwaite and Andrew Jackson, all of whom will remain as consultants with the new business, to be re-branded as SMH Haywood & Co. The newly-enlarged SMH will employ over 65 staff.

James Hartley, managing partner of SMH, said:

“We’re thrilled to welcome Haywood & Co into SMH, increasing our staff head count to over 65 employees. This enables SMH to further establish its position in the Rotherham area and for Haywood & Co to offer their clients an all-round financial service. Allied Irish Bank (GB)’s backing supports our strategy to continue developing our strength and depth of advisory services and provide clients with a truly one-stop shop for financial, legal and tax advice.

“Our long-term plans focus on developing the SMH brand in different towns across the region, so it is very much a case of ‘watch this space’ with regards to further announcements.”

Andy Cocker, head of Allied Irish Bank (GB)’s Business Centre in the East Midlands and South Yorkshire, added:

“SMH is a progressive firm led by a senior team who possess a powerful combination of a strong track record and ambition. The merger with Haywood & Co reinforces SMH’s presence in the market, provides a solid platform for future growth and creates a major force in the region. We’re looking forward to building on our relationship with James, Jonathon and Simon and backing them to achieve their dreams and ambitions.”

Joe Midgley, managing partner of Haywood & Co, commented:

“We’re delighted to join forces with SMH, a local firm that has a similar ethos and client focus to ourselves and the perfect fit to ensure we can take Haywood & Co to the next level. It is very much business as usual for us - all the current staff will still be on hand, but we now have the resources of a larger firm to ensure we can offer the best all round service for our clients’ business, personal and family financial requirements.”

In addition to funding SMH’s latest merger Allied Irish Bank (GB) has refinanced SMH’s previous loan arrangements.

Legal advisers to Allied Irish Bank (GB) were Rachel Jones and Lisa Wallis at Freeths.

*The AIB logo, Allied Irish Bank (GB) and Allied Irish Bank (GB) Savings Direct are trademarks used under licence by AIB Group (UK) plc incorporated in Northern Ireland.  Registered Office: 92 Ann Street, Belfast BT1 3HH.  Registered Number NI018800.  Authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority.


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