October 2, 2020
Law firm Womble Bond Dickinson (WBD) has advised award-winning robotics manufacturer Tharsus on the extension of its long-standing partnership with Ocado Group.
Northumberland-based Tharsus has been working with the online grocery giant for seven years, making the robots that the firm uses to pick groceries for delivery in its fulfilment centres.
The extension of its partnership will see the firms continue working together until 2024 and the deal will also result in a multi-million-pound investment at the firm’s Blyth sites, creating and safeguarding around 100 jobs in the North East and across the UK.
A multidisciplinary team of lawyers from WBD advised on the deal, which was led by Newcastle- based partners Robert Phillips and Peter Snaith. The firm provided key commercial expertise.
Robert Phillips, Tharsus client partner at WBD, comments: “Helping our clients to support the North East economy is an important strategic goal for WBD. We’re thrilled to have advised Tharsus on this exciting development for the business, which will generate investment, innovation and create new jobs in the region. Our strong commercial expertise, coupled with our cross-sector knowledge in manufacturing and technology enabled us to secure the best possible outcome for our client.”
Brian Palmer, chief executive of Tharsus adds: “We are excited to continue our long-standing relationship with Ocado and push the boundaries of a rapidly evolving sector. Aside from the innovation gains to be made, the partnership will bring new investment and jobs to the local area. We were founded in the North East and are proud to be a focal point of the community here.
“We are extremely grateful for the expertise and commitment of the WBD team in delivering this transaction. It was essential for us to have access to the level of experience and technical expertise from a local team with the resources and reach of a large national firm. WBD is well known for its track record in the manufacturing and technology sectors and was the law firm of choice to guide us through the complex legal issues and help us achieve a good result for all.”
Peter Snaith and Robert Phillips form part of the manufacturing sector team at WBD. Based in the firm’s Newcastle office, they lead a team of lawyers in the North East – with access to wider expertise nationally – which focuses on supporting the manufacturing sector. Historic relationships include regional and national manufacturing businesses ranging from international brand names through to growing and substantial regional owner-managed and SME businesses.
This large and dedicated team bring genuine understanding and cross-sector expertise, which enable them to provide value-added services to manufacturing sector businesses. The team’s active participation in regional industry support associations like North East Automotive Alliance, NEPIC and NOF also demonstrate strong credentials and deep understanding of the opportunities and challenges facing sector businesses.
With deep roots in the North East and its largest UK office based in Newcastle, WBD is committed to playing its part in the rejuvenation of the North East by using its local, national and international reach and expertise to benefit the region’s leading sectors, businesses, people and organisations.
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