You’ve seen the deals news, you know that he is Head of our Corporate Team here in Cheltenham, but we thought we should properly introduce you to Tim Ward, so we asked him a few key questions.
Tell us a bit about yourself first
I live near Evesham, and I’ve been a lawyer for longer than I care to remember – though I still buy lottery tickets, just in case!
What type of legal advice do you provide and to what sort of clients?
My advice is practical and commercial – my clients are mainly business owners, self-made people or directors of bigger organisations which have a commercial perspective, rather than the huge conglomerates with numerous lines of management.
They have some important characteristics in common – my clients know what matters to them, they have successfully built up a great business and they have often taken calculated risks to do so. Any advisor must be able to appreciate that, and whilst we need to point out the commercial icebergs, we should also be supporting entrepreneurs to move their business forward and be fully aligned to what they have in mind.
What’s your most memorable deal and why?
Well, one springs to mind where the parties fell out on closing, not because of anything to do with the deal, and since neither could see past the emotional rollercoaster, I felt like a marriage guidance counsellor!
More seriously, when I was a trainee, we were doing a deal in September 2001 and my boss, despite other people in the room wanting to stop and come back another day, said that we should keep going. We closed the deal that afternoon, just as the plane struck the Twin Towers and the terrible events of 9/11 unfolded.
What is your number one tip for clients?
Have a plan and engage with your advisers properly; we are genuinely interested in you and your business and can often offer valuable support.
Also, if you are exiting a business, especially if it is a partial exit, don’t just think about the cheque on closing. Consider the longer-term relationship and ensure you have a shared vision; spend time getting under the buyer’s skin; ask yourself “would I be happy going out for a beer with this person?”
Outside work, how do you like to spend your spare time?
When lockdown ends – and that can’t come soon enough – my best times are spent in my caravan.
A weekend, in total seclusion in a field, with life’s essentials -red wine, gin, a barby going, a good book and my dog – that’s perfect. I suppose my family can come too…