Wolseley slims down panel to two firms

Building materials supplier Wolseley has revamped its UK legal panel, retaining only Addleshaw Goddard and Eversheds for all its legal needs.

Birmingham firm BPE Solicitors, Burges Salmon and Norton Rose – which previously carried out real estate, regional and employment work respectively – have been dropped.

Wolseley general counsel Richard Shoylekov, who worked with UK legal head Graham Middlemiss on the review, said the panel had been streamlined partly to cut costs, adding: “We’re going through tough times. This is an effort to improve the cost and efficiency of our relationships.”

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, which serves as main corporate adviser on the company’s global panel, will remain on Wolseley’s roster – but because the company is not involved in any major deals Addleshaws and Eversheds will handle most corporate matters between them.

Real estate work will be handled by Eversheds, where Meg Heppel is relationship partner, while Addleshaws will give employment advice under client partner Richard Thomas. Middlemiss said: “We were impressed by Eversheds’ and Addleshaw Goddard’s expertise.”

Wolseley has been hit hard by the downturn and has made more than 7,000 redundancies this year.