The journey for Engleharts Solicitors started in 1980 under the fine supervision of David Englehart, the founder of the company. Mr Englehart is an accomplished, respected, and prominent business leader with considerable expertise in the area of Commercial Property Law and Practice. He qualified as a Solicitor in 1966 and has been provideing a trusted and first-class service to his Clients. He can also be described as a go-getter, philanthropist, and visionary who is an entrepreneur par excellence.
David was born in Bedford, England, in 1943. His mother’s family moved to Brighton in or about 1945 and his mother met and married her second husband, whose surname he has, a year or so later. He was educated at a primary school in Brighton and then went to a local grammar school and, after completing a five-year course in four years to obtain ‘O’ Levels, he left just before his 16th birthday. and then went into a well-established local firm of solicitors and became articled to one of the Partners.
During the following years, David had three children. He had made a lot of efforts working within a firm but after a spell in London and a further spell in Birmingham, he moved back to Brighton and started this practice in January 1980.
Further the visionary apprised, “I think the main work I have carried out in my professional life centres around the commercial property. At about the age of 17 or 18, I was first instructed by my then firm to look at and conclude a lease of a commercial property. For some reason, I was fascinated. I then became involved in the sale or purchase of businesses that had a high turnover after I qualified in 1966 and for some time thereafter. This enabled me to build up a large portfolio of commercially minded clients. I also got involved in substantial criminal defense work and I like to believe I was reasonably successful. My last case some years ago was a murder trial and I suppose it is called bowing out on a high note.”
“I also at one stage became very active in alcohol licensing. The advantage of my own business was that I could work as many hours as I liked without the feeling that I got in other firms I worked with that some people were putting in rather less than others but expecting to get the same”, he added.
From the Founder’s Desk
Hurdles on the Way: There have been difficulties and challenges as the years have progressed. In 1953 when I was 10 a book came out called “Parkinson’s Law.” read it cover-to-cover. As a result of a childhood where I was left on my own for long periods, I preferred to work rather than play.
The Driving Force: am motivated by the desire to try and provide my clients with as high a standard as I can. When I achieve something that might increase the value of my clients’ portfolio or properties, I quietly purr to myself with satisfaction. I also strongly believe in having a decent relationship with the person on the other side as it is much easier to strike a deal when you are behaving pleasantly and politely than it is when you are shouting at each other down the telephone.
Innovations on the Way: I have a very open mind on this. I certainly believe that versatility of thought is essential in my job. Commercial property is not, by and large, a penpushing exercise but one where you consider carefully the overall package and see how this could affect your client both now and in the future.
Keeping the Team Motivated
David Englehart is a firm believer that nobody works for him. They work with him. He also makes a point of speaking to everybody within the team every day and even cracking a few jokes now and then to relieve tension. He will spare readers of any of his jokes!
Impact of Pandemic
This is undergoing a very traumatic time. Many retail businesses are suffering badly. David is by no means convinced that commercial property is the most popular subject of legal services and he tries not to let his love for that particular aspect cloud the reality that there are many people who do not get switched on by churning their way through a 60-page lease.
What is Success?
For David Englehart, success is keeping his commercial property clients happy. Incorporated within the commercial property are tertiary loans. There are three types of lenders: prime, secondary, and tertiary. Prime is a really big boy. Secondary are often subsidiaries of the big boys or those
providing a different service from the main banks. Tertiary lenders are just ordinary people or companies and David acts for several of those. They are often family companies that have grown over a generation or two and utilise their spare cash to assist other businesses on a loan-to-value
basis. It is demanding but fascinating work, as what they are doing is assisting small people in business either starting up or trying to expand and enabling them to do so with loans from the clients which are short-term whilst they get themselves into a position to get a longer-term prime or secondary loan.
David’s Views on the Current Business World of Europe
The visionary keeps an open mind. He believes he lives in a fantastic country full of hard working, entrepreneurial people, and whilst he thinks this country gets on with most members of the EU there were several who for some reason seem to be envious of him and snipe at him. David keeps a strong involvement in politics and it is a path many have commented on pursuing at some point after his legal career. His journey as a business leader has been quite tiring as one needs to focus on it.
Achievement & Accomplishments
When asked about the major achievements, David proudly shared, “I am pleased to have been able to do what I did from a humble beginning with absolutely no capital behind me and have been on my own since I was 17. It has been an interesting journey. I very much like to see my support staff and fellow solicitors and fee earners enjoy their work and enjoy each other’s company. That to me is really important.”
Words of Wisdom
For Entrepreneurs: Be prepared to work and then work again and then again. If you have a brilliant, innovative idea then all is well and good. In addition, a lot of business is generated in pubs, restaurants, socialising, etc.
General Life Advice: It is not taking part that counts, it is winning. Nobody remembers who comes second. Show me a good loser, you show me a liar, “My apologies, but ironically it is a better piece of advice than “just take part and let the thing flow as that way there is always someone who is going to beat you to whatever achievement you want to reach”, David Englehart.