Dentons reviews 32 Maclays support roles in pre-merger redundancy consultation

Dentons has begun a redundancy consultation ahead of its merger with Maclay Murray & Spens that could see up to 32 business services roles cut across three of the Scots firm’s offices.

The 32 potentially impacted roles are in Maclays’ finance, facilities, HR, IT and marketing teams in Edinburgh, Glasgow and London. The firm’s other base in Aberdeen will be unaffected.

Following the merger, which is now expected to go live in late October or early November, Maclays’ London team will move into Dentons’ One Fleet Place headquarters. The Scots firm has 46 fee earners in London, including 11 partners.

Duplication of roles as a result of the merger is understood to be the reason for the proposed cuts. All of the potentially impacted staff have been informed and the consultation will take place during the next few weeks.

The consultation comes after this July’s announcement that Dentons and Maclays had agreed to merge, a deal that will hand Dentons an entrance into the Scotland market.

In a joint statement, the firms said: “The combination of Dentons and Maclay Murray & Spens will complete later this year. In advance of completion, we have commenced a collective consultation on the formal transfer of MMS staff into Dentons.

“The consultation process will deal with a number of measures that it is envisaged will be taken in connection with the transfer, one of which is a number of proposed redundancies within the Maclay Murray & Spens business services teams. There are 32 potentially impacted roles, and all individuals who are potentially affected by the proposed redundancies have now been informed. We will be providing support to impacted individuals throughout.”

The Dentons deal is the culmination of a long-running merger hunt for Maclays, which included talks with Addleshaw Goddard and legacy Bond Pearce. Dentons and Maclays first met towards the end of last year, and began formal discussions in January.

The Scottish firm, which has 62 partners and almost 200 other fee earners, will see its brand disappear on completion of the tie-up.

The merger, which will add to Dentons’ existing UK offices in London, Milton Keynes and Watford, is the latest deal in a seemingly relentless run of international expansion for the firm. Other recent moves have included a launch in Georgia this May with the hire of DLA Piper’s 11-lawyer Tbilisi team, while in March the firm secured its first base in the Netherlands via a merger with Dutch firm Boekel.