Legal Business Blogs

BLM to cut almost half of support staff in Leeds in ongoing restructuring

LB 100 firm BLM has confirmed it will axe 19 out of 40 business support roles in Leeds as it downsizes and relocates in the city.

In a statement the firm said it had embarked on a programme of business improvement earlier in the year and that it has established a ‘premises strategy group’ to review its locations.

The statement said: ‘We have made a proposal to change the nature of our operations in Leeds and create a lean, agile and focused hub in Leeds, thereby reducing our current office space.’

BLM said its intention was to maintain as many staff as possible, and it was undergoing consultation on the redundancies.

‘We have a number of strong customer relationships in place in our Leeds office. We will continue to maintain a presence in the city.’

Mike Brown, senior partner at BLM said: ‘It is clear to us that the workplace of the future does not necessarily reflect the workplace of today and that the growth of our business will be the result of the investment we make now. It is with this continued investment that we are able to adapt and re-shape our business model to align ourselves to the risk and insurance world.’

BLM posted a 3% increase in turnover to £107.7m in 2015/16 but has struggled with profitability, as profits per equity partner fell 14% to £205,000 during the period.

In 2014/15 the firm surpassed the £100m mark, buoyed by its Scottish and Northern Ireland mergers. Berrymans merged with HBM Sayers on 1 May 2014 to become BLM, creating a £100m risk and insurance-focused firm with 170 partners and additional offices in Glasgow and Edinburgh. Further expansion saw the firm combine with Campbell Fitzpatrick Solicitors in December 2014, gifting the firm with offices in Belfast and Londonderry, eight partners and an additional 21 legal staff.