Colt deal expands BLP’s MLS stable

Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP) has signed its second five-year deal with a major client to manage its legal needs.

The firm has entered into an agreement with Colt, the business telecoms and IT provider, to handle all its employment advice globally.

The deal comes after BLP launched its Managed Legal Services (MLS) unit earlier this year through a contract to run Thames Water’s legal function (, 25 March).

Under the new arrangement BLP will handle strategic and contentious work such as team moves, restrictive covenants and discrimination claims. It has also set up referral relationships with firms in each of the 13 jurisdictions in which Colt operates.

“What we did with Thames Water was capable of being modularised,” explained head of corporate John Bennett, who runs MLS. “What BLP should be doing, and what it wants to do, is high-value stuff. As regards the more diverse needs of clients, [we’ll handle these partly] through a combination of giving tools to the HR ­function, risk management, implementation and standardisation of policies, and partly through doing work onsite through [our contract attorney offering] Lawyers on Demand.”

Bennett said that there would be no redundancies from Colt’s in-house team as a result of the deal.