Client profile: Daniel Toner, Spire Healthcare

Client profile: Daniel Toner, Spire Healthcare

Daniel Toner had done his research. Before an interview to become head of legal at Bupa Hospitals in 2006, he noticed the company had shifted some of its non-hospital assets to a new division.

At the interview he asked, tongue-in-cheek, whether Bupa was selling its hospitals division. He was told: ‘Absolutely not. That would never happen. They’re central to the Bupa philosophy.’ After getting the job, Toner recalls: ‘On my first day, I was called aside and told, “Right, we’re selling our hospitals division. Sign this NDA.”’ Continue reading “Client profile: Daniel Toner, Spire Healthcare”

Life during law: Paul Maher

Life during law: Paul Maher

I grew up in North West London. My parents came from working-class, Irish Catholic backgrounds from Liverpool. Nobody had been to university. My mum left school at 14 but she was always keen on education.

I did law at Bristol University. It was in the pre-Thatcher days and I was lucky enough to be sent to university by the ‘Socialist Republic of Brent’. They paid for everything. Continue reading “Life during law: Paul Maher”

‘Our values are imperatives’: Pinsents chief on diversity, success and being bolder

‘Our values are imperatives’: Pinsents chief on diversity, success and being bolder

Legal Business (LB): How do you create a clearer picture of what Pinsents is doing on diversity?

Richard Foley (RF): You’ve got to be consistent in highlighting it as a priority. We’re clear about the programmes we have and we’re vocal about successes. We’ve just been ranked second of all UK corporates in this year’s Stonewall index for the second year running. Continue reading “‘Our values are imperatives’: Pinsents chief on diversity, success and being bolder”

Client profile: Sarah Nelson Smith, Yum! Brands

Client profile: Sarah Nelson Smith, Yum! Brands

In many ways it was ideal preparation. Before embarking on a legal career, Sarah Nelson Smith took a post-law school gap year working as a holiday rep in the popular Greek retreat of Halkidiki. It was an eye-opening experience, figuratively and literally, welcoming holidaymakers at unholy hours and dealing with bizarre questions and gripes.

‘We had one guy who complained about the sea. There was a beautiful blue-flag beach but he said: “The hotel smells too salty in the morning.” He also complained about too many fish, while once a woman was crying during the welcome speech. When I asked her what was wrong, she said: “I can’t find my boyfriend.” I asked: “When was the last time you saw him?” and she said: “I haven’t seen him since we arrived at the airport, when the police took him.” He’d been smuggling drugs and got arrested. I had to go to the British consulate and fetch him.’ Continue reading “Client profile: Sarah Nelson Smith, Yum! Brands”

Life during law: Richard Youle, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom

Life during law: Richard Youle, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom

When I moved to Hull from Sheffield at five my next-door neighbour was a just-born, [Linklaters partner] Alex Woodward – Woodie. A very good friend. Our mums and dads are very good friends. Went to the same schools, drank in the same pubs.

Woodie is super-smart, so he got a training contract at Linklaters, whereas I trained at Stamp Jackson & Procter in Hull. Continue reading “Life during law: Richard Youle, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom”