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Venture capital house 3i is to axe four in-house lawyers from its UK operations.
The cuts come as the private equity group scales back its operations across Europe in response to the economic downturn. The redundancies will hit the Birmingham office with one job loss and the London office, where three lawyers will be made redundant. The company refused to say how the teams in their other European offices will be affected. The redundancies will hit those working in the investment rather than corporate teams, in line with the company's broader redundancy strategy. 3i refused to comment on which positions would be affected, other than to say that they fall across the hierarchy of the legal department. The spokesperson refused to rule out job losses in the most senior ranks of the investment business. 3i has an unusually large in-house legal department for a company of its size, reflecting the volume of work involved in its investment activities. It is understood to have a total of around 40 lawyers. The value of the company's investment portfolio is believed to have contracted by about £1.1bn between April and the end of September. Macfarlanes, Wragge & Co, Osborne Clarke, Addleshaw Booth & Co and Slaughter and May all do work for the venture capital company.