Dow Schofield Watts’ tax practice acquires Lancashire firm

Financial advisory firm Dow Schofield Watts has expanded its tax practice by acquiring a Lancashire company that specialises in advising high-net-worth individuals.

Dow Schofield Watts’ tax practice acquires Lancashire firm
From L – R Nicole Burstow, Andrew Robinson, Dave Waddington

Burscough-based STS Europe – which is one of the leading firms of its type in the North – advises clients, including UK-resident non-domiciles, on matters such as inheritance tax, trusts and offshore structures, and also assists offshore banks and trust companies throughout Europe with UK tax issues. The deal enables the retirement of owner Andy Sharp.

STS Europe, which offers a full range of tax services, including assistance with tax investigations and compliance, will now become part of DSW Tax Advisory, Dow Schofield Watts’ tax practice. It will remain in its Burscough office and will operate as DSW STS in the immediate future. Andrew Robinson, a Director in STS, will become a Partner in DSW Tax Advisory.

Dow Schofield Watts offers an alternative to traditional accountancy and tax firms by enabling professionals to run their own businesses under its brand. DSW Capital plc, the company which owns the Dow Schofield Watts brand, provided funding support for the transaction.

Dave Waddington of DSW Tax Advisory said: “STS has built a strong reputation for its work with high-net-worth clients and offshore trusts. The acquisition will bring additional expertise to DSW Tax Advisory and enable us to expand the range of services we offer. We are delighted to welcome Andrew on board.”

The deal brings the total number of professionals in the Dow Schofield Watts network to 105 and follows its expansion into the Midlands with the addition of corporate recovery firm Bridgewood and the launch of a new corporate finance team.

James Dow, CEO of DSW Capital, said: “Tax advisory is a target area of expansion for us and the addition of STS will complement the existing services within the network, including corporate finance and wealth advisory.

“This is the first time we have supported a licensee to expand through acquisition and it demonstrates the advantages of becoming part of the Dow Schofield Watts Network”.