Five-partner exodus sees Bristows halt promotions

Bristows’ partnership has been put on hold as the firm assesses the damage from the shock departures of five life sciences partners.

The firm is postponing this year’s round of partnership promotions while it comes to terms with the loss of one-fifth of its partnership.

Co-managing partner Pat Treacy said: “We’ll hold off promotion talks for about three months to see what happens with the partners leaving.”

Bristows last made up a partner in July 2005, promoting healthcare regulatory specialist Maria Isabel Manley.

Patent litigators Penny Gilbert, Tim Powell, Simon Ayrton, Zoe Butler and Alex Wilson gave in their notice in November last year and will leave the firm this month to set up their own boutique.

Bristows is one of the last remaining all-equity partnerships in The Lawyer’s UK top 100.

Treacy said the firm would not promote five to the partnership to keep the numbers up, but would stick to a strategy of making up two or three.