Legal Business Blogs

Freshfields to double office space in Manchester as low-cost services site in Salford confirmed

Having taken its first step toward offering alternative legal services to clients earlier this year, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer has selected a long-term base for its low-cost services hub in Manchester, double the size of its current office.

The Magic Circle firm will move from its temporary base in Manchester’s city centre to permanently occupy One New Bailey, located by Spinningfields in Salford. Staff are expected to move into the new premises from early 2017.

The firm has leased 80,000 sq ft with the flexibility of adapting ‘the amount of space that [Freshfields] would occupy to reflect the evolving needs of [its] clients and business’.

The legal and business services centre, called the Global Centre, opened its doors in the northwest in July this year after it announced it was to move the majority of its support services team out of its London office for a cheaper and more efficient alternative.

The office will accommodate legal services staff, as well as human resources, IT, marketing and business development, office management, document specialists and change management. It is currently based in Arndale House where the firm has a 40,000 sq ft lease.

The transfer from London remains ongoing and is expected to create a number of redundancies within the support services team, although many are expected to relocate in phases starting next year, with back office staff being the first to relocate. Alongside business services, repetitive legal work is also being shifted to the new centre.

In May, Freshfields appointed Anup Kollanethu as centre director for the combined services after it signed a lease for space in Arndale House. ‘One New Bailey gives us both the high quality and attractive location we want for our staff,’ said Kollanethu.

Salford mayor Ian Stewart added: ‘It’s exciting news that Freshfields has selected Salford as the long term location for its global services centre. We welcome the creation of new jobs in Salford and the city council is ready to work with the firm to make their staff welcome and to assist with recruitment support.’

Knight Frank Manchester advised Freshfields throughout the selection process for its long term Manchester premises.