Berwin Leighton Paisner in talks to move Bryan Cave London lawyers into Adelaide House post-merger

Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP) and Bryan Cave are planning on consolidating their London operations in one office if the merger between the pair is successful.

According to partners, conversations have taken place about Bryan Cave moving its London-based lawyers into BLP’s Adelaide House headquarters by London Bridge.

Bryan Cave currently occupies 44,000 sq ft at 88 Wood Street in EC2, and has a lease that runs until August 2022.

According to the firm’s website, it has 38 lawyers in London, including 13 partners. The firm’s London managing partner is corporate lawyer Carol Osborne.

A former BLP partner said BLP had undertaken similar property rationalisations after previous mergers.

“BLP went open plan about two years ago, and that gave them more flexibility. I suspect that they will try and move them all in to Adelaide House because when Berwin Leighton merged with Paisner & Co in 2001, that was certainly very important. There will be people around from those days making that point again,” they said.

BLP could push through its merger with Bryan Cave as soon as 1 January next year, according to sources close to the firm.

The two firms confirmed the merger discussions last month (16 October) in a joint announcement. It is understood that the pair are aiming for close financial integration, after Bryan Cave chair Therese Pritchard said the combined firm “would be one of only a handful of global firms operating in a one-firm structure”.

If the merger goes ahead, it will create a 1,500-lawyer firm with combined revenue of about £730m. Any deal is subject to the resolution of conflict issues and approval by partners at both firms.

BLP and Bryan Cave declined to comment.