The Co-op Group has announced (today 11.1.16) the expansion of its legal services business into communities throughout England and Wales with the acquisition of Sheffield-based Collective Legal Solutions Group Limited.
Collective Legal Solutions provides Wills, Trust and Probate services nationally and the acquisition will further strengthen Co-op’s commitment to provide its members and communities with accessible legal advice and support.
Collective Legal Solutions, which was founded in 2007, is one of the largest businesses of its kind in the UK, with over 100 associates and support colleagues providing face-to-face services to customers in inheritance related legal matters.
The acquisition will enhance the legal services offered by Co-op within the Wills, Probate and Funeral planning market by providing the capability to serve our customers and members through a face-to-face channel.
Co-op’s Legal Services business, Co-op Legal Services, became the first alternative business structure (ABS) in the UK in 2012, and is a market leader in Probate and estate administration and one of the leading Will writing businesses in the UK.
It is a core part of Co-op’s Consumer Services Division which also includes its long established Funeralcare and General Insurance businesses.
Rod Bulmer, CEO of Consumer Services at The Co-op comments:
“This acquisition is a perfect fit for the Co-op, supporting our purpose of championing a better way of doing business for you and your communities.
“Our consumer services businesses – General Insurance, Funeralcare and Legal services – already serve millions of our members in communities across the UK and Collective Legal Solutions will further support that work.
“This acquisition also gives us the opportunity to consider how this face-to-face channel can support other services provided by our consumer services’ businesses and the wider Co-op Group.”
Matt Howells, Managing Director of The Co-operative Legal Services comments:
“This is an exciting time for the Co-op Group and puts the consumer legal services business at the heart of the rebuild“.
“We already have a leading Wills and Probate business, but in an area which consumers can sometimes find complex, this acquisition strengthens what we can offer our members by enabling us to also provide face to face services, in their local communities.”
Part of The Co-operative Group, Co-operative Legal Services (CLS) has over 300 staff serving customers across England and Wales from offices in London, Manchester and Bristol. It became the first ABS within the UK in 2012.