In-House Team of the Year
This category is open to UK general counsel and their teams from any industry sector. Tying in with our annual GC Powerlist report and event, this award will be presented to the team that can demonstrate outstanding performance on behalf of the company, either through innovative use of its own resources or effective management of external law firms.
The Carlyle Group
The London team is directly involved in investments that cover the full spectrum of geographies, sectors and deal structures. With each lawyer running around five deals at any one time, the volume of work handled is highly unusual. Such an approach has won plaudits from the c-suite, which notes the significant contribution from legal in helping Carlyle find value through investments others have shied from and facilitating the turnaround of underperforming investments.
BT’s legal team has had an exceptionally busy 12 months. A change in leadership came against the backdrop of high-profile projects, including the separation of its network division Openreach into a distinct business and a deal with Sky to sell their channels on each other’s platforms. Not to mention the 18,500 claims the litigation team in Sheffield has dealt with over the past year – earning revenue for BT from third parties.
Bowen is known to expect his legal team to embrace the same pioneering, innovation-driven Dyson approach to legal issues that is manifest
in the company itself. This can be clearly seen
from its work successfully appealing to discuss changes to the EU’s proposed legislation on testing and labelling vacuum cleaners’ energy performance after spotting a problem in the proposed methodology.
An efficiency drive to improve profitability across the business at the end of 2016 led to a 40% reduction of the legal department’s budget. To deliver the cost savings, Payne had to oversee a successful overhaul of the legal function through dedicated and consistent implementation of innovative processes, using technology, more effective resource management and efficient work prioritisation. The result was increased satisfaction of both internal and external stakeholders.
The 10-strong, Edinburgh-based RBS employment law team faced significant challenges over 2017, where it worked on managing the litigation worldwide as the bank exited many countries across the globe and – in a once-in-a-lifetime project – working on one of the biggest TUPE transfers ever within the financial sector as approximately 55,000 employees within RBS will be moved between employing entities in May to comply with ring-fencing legislation.