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Hammonds has targeted its employment team for further growth after a bumper six months
In February, highly-rated Eversheds employment partner David Beswick joined the team and was made joint head along with Veronica Dean. Beswick's move was followed in March with the defection of four more Eversheds employment lawyers - Kathy Halliday, Sarah Bunker, Teresa Dolan and Paula Whelan. Dean said: "They've really complemented the team and it's good to have a bit of fresh air blowing through. It makes us even keener to go out and pitch for new work when we know that the team is able to deliver the level of service that we're aiming for. As you get larger it means you have more depth when it comes to putting together the best team for a particular client." This year, the 65-strong national employment team has already advised Motorola on a major UK restructuring and ICI on a Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) case involving 439 employees and a £170m damages claim. The Birmingham team has won a string of impressive new clients. Jewsons, part of the Saint-Gobain Group which already has a relationship with the firm's Leeds office, was won via a competitive tender at Easter, Windsor Life became a client in June and other recent wins include Enterprise Inns and National Car Parks. In July, a team led by David Beswick beat off competition from his old firm Eversheds, Henmans and Reading firm Clarks in being instructed by the pharmaceutical giant Bayer to advise on UK employment issues. Hammonds had already advised the company on rapid response and pensions issues, but it was a new client for the employment team. "We went for a competitive tender where we were up against three very good firms," said Dean. "Bayer was satisfied that it knew the firm and it liked the way we were proposing to deliver the service to it. It's another great win to go with the others we've already had this year." Dean said that the team will grow further in September, with further growth expected next year as the new clients bed down. "We're taking on two more newly-qualifieds in the autumn. We're in a period of growth and will keep reassessing things," she said.