Hogan Lovells considers closing one of its three London bases amid support staff restructuring

Hogan Lovells is considering dropping one of its three London bases as the firm continues to review its office space requirements in the capital, amid a restructuring of its back-office operations.

The firm is mulling whether to leave Meridian House on Farringdon Street – which houses between 200 and 250 staff covering a number of support functions – and drop down to two buildings in the City.

In addition to its City headquarters at Atlantic House and support base at Meridian House, the firm also has City space at 21 Holborn Viaduct.

Hogan Lovells is midway through a restructuring of its UK support staff, with 90 London roles set to be cut or moved to its business services centres in Birmingham and Johannesburg, which currently house about 70 and 110 staff members respectively.

One London partner at the firm said: “We’re looking at dropping Meridian House – a lot of this is driven by our offshore strategy. We just don’t need as much space.”

In September, the firm agreed a deal to triple its Birmingham office space as it gears up to move support roles away from London. The firm signed a lease to move into 23,388 sq ft space on the eighth floor of The Colmore Building in January 2018 – more than three times the 7,620 sq ft it currently occupies on the 10th floor of the building.

The firm has also created a designated ‘tech hub’ space in Atlantic House. Partners from a range of practices, including corporate, technology, regulatory and commercial, are set to move into the refurbished space later this month.

Another London partner said: “The firm is trying to break down siloes and wants a team that focuses on a number of artifical intelligence issues – augmented reality, blockchain, cloud computing etc – and can support clients on issues that arise from those sort of things.”

Last year Hogan Lovells considered a move away from Atlantic House, but struck a deal with its landlord, Deka Immobilien Investment, to remain to remain in the building.

London managing partner Susan Bright said: “With regards to our London real estate, we can confirm that we will remain in Atlantic House until 2026 as per our recent agreement with the landlord, and have not made any final decisions in relation to Meridian House or 21 Holborn Viaduct. While we are considering all our options, we do not anticipate making any further decisions on this matter for the next six to 12 months.”