The move of the technology team from Barlow Lyde & Gilbert (BLG) to Bird & Bird has raised numerous questions, not least that of when will the partners (who are on 12 months’ notice) escape?
But it appears there is an issue that is of even more immediate concern to the partners involved. As revealed by Tulkinghorn this summer (21 August), the boys in the team are known as the ‘Porsche partnership’. The reason is that they all drive 911s. The question is: for how long? The motors were all bought under the taxefficient BLG car scheme, which gives partners £12,000 every two years towards the cost of a new car. As such, strictly speaking, they’re partnership assets.
Now, partners are free to chip in their own cash if they want, and the cannier ones have been taking a punt on cars that hold their value, meaning that the resell value of the wheels is added to the next lot of £12,000. It’s a great way to trade up if you happen to be a partner at BLG.
Unfortunately, Bird & Bird doesn’t have a similar scheme. Oh dear. If, in the New Year, you happen to see Chris Holder driving a Skoda, you’ll know why.