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James Keliher

James Keliher

James Keliher

James was a partner in our corporate and commercial team in Exeter before his retirement in 2020. If you are a client of James or have been referred to him, please contact Giles Dunning or Simon Morris.

Qualifying in March 1983, James had over 30 years’ experience advising on mergers and acquisitions, management buy-outs, partnerships and LLPs.

He provided advice to SMEs and family owner-managed businesses, often preparatory to a sale. James worked across a wide range of sectors including hotels, holiday parks, manufacturing, postal delivery services, quarries, waste disposal and property development.

James was selected by his peers for inclusion in the Fifth Edition of The Best Lawyers in the United Kingdom for Corporate Law. He was also a Trustee of Jean Sainsbury Animal Welfare Trust.

His work included advising on:

  • Sale and leaseback of a hotel in the South West to the Unilever pension fund.
  • Advising on the disposal of a South West hotel group with different family interests.
  • MBO of a postal services company in London/the North West buying out the majority private equity shareholder.
  • Reorganisation of a quarrying company in the South West.
  • Distressed purchase of a company redeveloping a sports club and residential apartment block in South West London.

Outside of work and now retired from Stephens Scown, James continues to enjoy sailing, tennis, walking and skiing.

James’ Accolades:

Chambers 2019“He’s always available to me, he has a good understanding of my business and has helped me to find innovative solutions to my issues.”

Chambers 2018 – extensive experience in MBOs, development and M&A work. He has specific expertise in the leisure and real estate sectors.

Recommended Lawyer – Legal 500 2016. Legal 500 is an independent guide to the legal profession who recognises top lawyers.

Chambers 2016 – James was ranked as a band 2 lawyer.


James has passed his clients on to Giles Dunning and Simon Morris; if you have been referred to James then please contact either of them.

James notes that ‘Giles and Simon are experienced partners in the corporate team; in their capable hands you can rest assured that they will be able to assist you with your matter’.