Promoted Hammerson GC launches first legal panel

Hammerson general counsel Sarah Booth is ­putting together the company’s first formal panel of external legal advisers, with firms currently tendering for places.

Sarah Booth
Sarah Booth

Until now the real estate company has turned to firms on an ad hoc basis, instructing Brodies, Clifford Chance, Eversheds and Nabarro in the past.

Booth joined the company in March 2010. She said she was formalising the panel to give greater clarity.

“One of my responsibilities is to make sure we have in place a structure for ­providing legal support across the business that’s clear, fit for purpose and cost-effective,” explained Booth. “We have support from law firms across many activities, from transactions through to leasing. It’s a wide range of subject areas we need to cover.”

Booth, who is Hammerson’s first general counsel, has just been promoted to the Anglo-French ­company’s group executive ­committee, the body responsible for the day-to-day running of the company.

In a statement, a Hammerson spokesman said: “Sarah’s promotion ensures Hammerson has someone at the very heart of the business to help support decision-making, both in terms of risk management but also securing opportunities.”

Booth is the only lawyer at the FTSE100 company and has no plans to expand its internal legal capability.

Hammerson is an owner-manager and developer of retail and office property in the UK and France. Its key assets include Brent Cross Shopping Centre, the ­Bullring in Birmingham and Italie 2 in Paris.