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The University of Westminster has dumped sole adviser Nabarro Nathanson and established its first legal panel.
Mills & Reeve and Eversheds have won the majority of the university’s legal work, with Beachcroft Wansbroughs completing the roster.
“Nabarro Nathanson is at the high end of London law firms fee-wise, and we felt we could probably get a better deal. Uniquely, Mills & Reeve, being a Cambridge-based firm, benefited from being able to offer out-of-London rates, but also by having a strong London presence,” said the university’s procurement manager Andrew Rance.
Mills & Reeve has been appointed as property adviser to the university and Eversheds will advise the institution on HR, student litigation, intellectual property and its international work (it recently entered a joint venture with the University of Tashkent in Uzbekistan, for example). Beachcrofts will have a relatively minor role initially, advising on licensing, trusts and charities.
The university held a competitive tender with 70 law firms, of which 12 were invited to a formal beauty parade. “Nabarros was doing a decent enough job, but it was felt that it was time to review the whole provision of legal services,” said Rance.
A spokesperson for Nabarros declined the opportunity to comment.