White & Case is considering opening a shared services centre to serve its European offices in what would be the firm’s third worldwide.
The US firm already has two back office support centres having launched its first in Manila in April 2007 and its second in Tampa in September last year. The two centres have a total of around 450 business services roles between them.
A third centre, which could be based in the UK, would not only offer White & Case additional time zone flexibility but also a range of European languages that are less available in its current two shared services centres.
Nick Salmon, White & Case’s chief operating officer for the EMEA region, confirmed the firm was in the “very early stages” of considering whether or not to set up a shared services centre in Europe.
“White & Case already has around 450 employees in the shared services centres we’ve established in Manila and Tampa, which would limit the scale of any third facility we put in place,” added Salmon.
Speculation as to the location of White & Case’s third centre, should the firm go ahead with launching it, is inevitably focusing on the UK.
A growing number of international firms have launched shared services centres in the UK recently including Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, which opened a lower-cost centre in Manchester earlier this year.
Freshfields is also considering opening two further legal services sites in Asia and the US following the launch of its Manchester base this summer, a move that would underline the growing trend for global firms to have three sites worldwide.
Other firms to have opened business services hubs in regional UK cities include Baker & McKenzie, which opened in Belfast last year, adding to its existing support centre in Manila; Allen & Overy and Herbert Smith Freehills, also in the Northern Irish capital; Berwin Leighton Paisner, which launched a Manchester hub in March last year, and Ashurst, which plumped for Glasgow in 2013.