Eversheds handed Severn Trent work

Eversheds has won another Tyco-style sole adviser role as environmental services group Severn Trent ditches its informal ties with more than 10 law firms.

The deal means Martineau Johnson and Slaughter and May, which, according to Hemscott, have been legal advisers for Severn Trent, are among the firms to lose out.

Severn Trent general counsel Fiona Smith said shaking up the group’s external legal advisers was the next step of a restructuring process that started 18 months ago.

Following its Tyco win, Eversheds has made it a strategic priority to market its ability to act as sole adviser to clients. It has since won similar roles for Akzo-Nobel and Samsung.

The firm, which in January made a £10m agreement with Tyco leading to the engineering conglomerate dumping more than 175 firms, will take on all of Severn Trent’s mainstream work, except for corporate and strategic regulatory matters.

“Looking at the spending power available and being able to get the value-added service we wanted, it made sense to go with Eversheds alone instead of taking on other firms as well,” said Smith.

Longstanding adviser Herbert Smith will continue to advise Severn Trent on corporate and strategic matters.

Severn Trent’s review of its legal services came after the FTSE100 water group restructured its in-house capabilities last November, creating one combined 12-lawyer team for the plc and the water group.