Legal Business Blogs

Crown Estate turns to BLP for lucrative central London portfolio

Following a review process announced last year, The Crown Estate has given Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP) the sole mandate for its £7bn Central London property portfolio.

BLP will now offer advice for this specific portfolio, which comprises of eight million square ft of commercial property across Regent Street. The portfolio is currently delivering a £1.5 billion investment and redevelopment programme in the area, regenerating historic blocks and the surrounding public realm.

A review of The Crown Estate’s legal advisers commenced last summer, overseen by general counsel Rob Booth. Firms used by the Crown Estate, which has £13bn of assets under management, include Hogan Lovells, King & Wood Mallesons, Norton Rose Fulbright, Burges Salmon, Bond Dickinson, Forsters and Gowling WLG.

Booth (pictured) commented: ‘We are delighted to add BLP to the roster of market leading firms that comprise our panel. We are very excited to be working with the team at BLP to take customer focus and legal service delivery forward, across our Central London portfolio.’

Chris de Pury, head of real estate at BLP, added: ‘We are well aware how competitive it is to win such a prestigious mandate, so you can imagine how thrilled we are to be appointed. It is a privilege to be able to play a part acting for The Crown Estate on such a high profile and groundbreaking portfolio.’

The high-profile appointment is a strong endorsement of BLP’s leading commercial real estate practice, which performed well in 2015/16 despite a 2% fall in revenues to £254m. Almost a year ago, BLP was in merger discussions with Miami-based Greenberg Traurig, which ultimately collapsed.