BLP management to review banking department as finance head quits

Berwin Leighton Paisner head of banking and finance Matthew Kellett has resigned in the latest departure to hit the mid-market firm.

His departure was announced internally today. His destination is not yet known, but the firm said that Kellett was leaving “to pursue business and other interests”.

In the wake of Kellett’s departure, managing partner Neville Eisenberg and chairman Robert Macgregor will be conducting a review into the banking department in conjunction with external consultants in order to assess the opportunities for that practice.

A statement from the firm read: “Matthew Kellett has decided to leave BLP to pursue his business and other interests. Matthew will stay in his role until a successor has been appointed. The finance team continues to retain significant clients and is involved an increasing amount of international and multi-practice work.

”We would like to thank Matthew for his contribution to the finance department and wish him every success. We are also taking this opportunity to conduct an independent review of the department, in conjunction with the finance partners, to assess how best to take advantage of the opportunities for the team going forward.”

BLP suffered a 40 per cent drop in profit this year, with PEP decreasing to £401,000 from £660,000 (30 September 2013).

The loss follows soon after the departure of private equity star Raymond McKeeve for Jones Day (20 August 2013), which prompted BLP management to defend its corporate offering (20 August 2013). Jones Day also picked up corporate finance partner Michael Weir (8 October 2013).

Other recent departures from BLP’s finance department include Richard Todd, moving to Mayer Brown (7 October 2013), Lisa Marks, who joined Stephenson Harwood (9 July 2013) and Rob Salter, who left for DLA Piper. Late last year project finance head Philippa Chadwick was hired by Squire Sanders (19 December 2012). Acquisition finance partner Andrew Bamber has also quit BLP (22 July 2013).