Sherbornes Solicitors, the Cheltenham based Business Law specialists have strengthened their team with the appointment of William Stebbings as Head of the Commercial Department and GDPR Champion. William has over 30 years’ experience of Commercial Law having advised the boards at household name companies such as Spirax Sarco and Bulmers as in-house counsel.
Simon Birks, Head of Corporate Services at Sherbornes commented:
“I am delighted that we have been able to secure the services of somebody with Willam’s calibre and experience to further strengthen our offering to businesses in the region. William’s extensive knowledge of commercial law is what stood out when we initially met him. William has joined Sherbornes at a time when the business continues to expand its presence in the market, both locally and regionally. It is sometimes difficult to find lawyers with not only technical excellence but commercial savvy as well. William’s history shows plenty of both”.
Since studying law at Oxford, William was Company Secretary/Group Solicitor at Spirax-Sarco Engineering plc, Company Solicitor at LINPAC Group Limited (then one of the UK’s largest privately owned businesses) and the Group Solicitor at H.P.Bulmer Holdings PLC (the well-known drinks company) where he was Secretary to the Group Executive Committee handling business acquisitions and sales, contractual issues, anti-trust matters and the protection of the Group’s worldwide IP portfolio.
Whilst at Bulmers, William enjoyed what he considers to be his finest success as a solicitor to-date, namely the EU-wide introduction of unit pricing for all pre-packaged food and drink products in retail outlets throughout Europe. This hugely significant change came about as a result of the European Court of Justice case of Cidrerie Ruwet S.A v Cidre Stassen S.A. and H.P.Bulmer Limited.
“Because of this case, the old restrictive regime of fixed packaging sizes for different types of goods was overturned in favour of consumer-friendly flexible unit pricing where prices per litre or kilogram are shown on retailers’ shelves. This case was welcomed by consumer goods companies and certainly saved the UK cider industry from potential commercial disaster in European export markets”.
William also commented on joining Sherbornes:
“I am delighted to have joined Sherbornes. One reaches an age where the form over substance approach of large organisations is no longer attractive and I just want to do the job I know so well, for clients who appreciate getting things done. It’s a breath of fresh air. I am very much looking forward to putting my knowledge and experience of commercial issues to use in the local and regional business community, both with existing and new Sherbornes clients”.