Vanessa Williams

Partner in Business & Corporate, Charities & Social Enterprise
and Commercial Contracts

+44 (0)845 257 9449

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Vanessa is a commercial lawyer with 20 years’ experience, 13 of which have been spent as a partner in leading London law firms. She has established and grown corporate/commercial departments and sat on the management board overseeing the running of the firm with particular responsibility for finance and HR strategy.

She has acted on transactions ranging from multi-million pound international acquisitions to business start-ups. She particularly enjoys working along-side owner managers helping them grow and develop their business.

Vanessa is the author of “Due Diligence: A Practical Guide”, she speaks regularly at national and international conferences on business law and is a visiting lecturer for the University of West of England Law Faculty. She is also a feature blogger for Jordans, the company formation agent and legal publisher, on issues affecting SME businesses.

In addition to her experience in running law firms, Vanessa is herself an entrepreneur. In response to the recession, she set up Across the Board, a practical governance advisory service aiming to maximise performance and minimise risk within organisations. She has run an investment network matching businesses with sources of funding and in collaboration with ActionCoach she helps management teams get “investor ready”. Vanessa is also a director of the Women of the Year Lunch and its associated charity which recognises the achievements of women across all sectors at an annual lunch.

In addition to being a qualified solicitor, Vanessa also holds the Corporate Finance Qualification from the Institute of Chartered Accounts in England and Wales.

Excello’s London charities and not for profit practice was recognised in Legal 500 2023 as ‘One to Watch’ recognising the firm’s expertise in advising charities and not for profit organisations.

‘A very experienced team in supporting charities’ under the watchful eye of Vanessa Williams who ‘stands out for her expertise and down to earth approach. Always very knowledgeable and approachable’.

Vanessa is married and divides her time between London during the week and her main home in the Brecon Beacons of Wales during the weekend, when she spends time with her husband and the family pets. Away from work, she is passionate about rugby, following Wales and the Cardiff Blues. She enjoys walking her deerhound dogs in the Brecon Beacons as well as following the art and music scenes in Cardiff and London. Since her husband is an archaeologist, she spends the rest of her spare time visiting piles of rocks and ruins.

Director and Company Secretary, Women of the Year Lunch
Managing Director, Awen Consultants Limited
Company Secretary, Latitude Leisure Limited

Vanessa was a key speaker at the following event and the recording can be viewed via the following post:

Trading out of the pandemic and post-Brexit: business webinar


Tenacious in getting deals done.


Very creative and practical in finding solutions that bring parties together and create a platform for positive collaboration going forward.


Completely unflappable and constantly reassuring, even when things get really tough in negotiations.


I could not have got my business up and running without the expert input provided by Vanessa. She created the legal architecture for every aspect of my business leaving me free to concentrate with confidence on developing the product and sales.


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