The Legal 500 Highlights – B P Collins LLP: ‘Compares well with City firms’

    Corporate & commercial

    B P Collins fields a team that ‘understands clients’ needs and compares well with City firms both on price and service‘. The group has an extensive track record in the waste management, recycling, renewable energy, technology, food, logistics and pharmaceutical and healthcare sectors, and has longstanding relationships with national and international clients such as Biffa Group.

    In an illustration of the depth of the firm’s waste industry knowledge, practice head Alex Zachary (‘Very thorough and will stick to his guns where required’) and solicitors Lucy Newman and Dana Eyre acted for Biffa Waste Services on its £4.9 million acquisition of Amber Engineering, a waste management business in South Wales. In another key transactional highlight, David Smellie acted for the shareholders of Martello Holdings on the sale of the company’s issued share capital to Franki Foundations UK.

    Other key figures include technology sector specialist Simon Deans, whose clients include CliniMed and Rico Logistics; and Victoria Holland, whose expertise encompasses retail and leisure and professional services.

    Commercial litigation

    B P Collins fields a team of ‘exceptionally good litigators‘ who combine ‘good technical knowledge with a personal service‘; for many, the team is ‘second to none‘. Practice head Matthew Brandis is ‘exceptional – incredibly thorough and very good at keeping clients informed and up to date’. He has more than 20 years’ experience handling complex contractual disputes, defamation actions and professional negligence claims, and is ably supported by Craig Williams, who ‘really considers the clients interests when delivering advice on complex legal issues‘; and Nick Hallchurch, whose extensive track record covers shareholder disputes, professional negligence claims against solicitors, health and safety disputes, and regulatory claims.

    The environmental, technology and pharmaceutical sectors are all key areas of strength for the practice; in an illustration of its capability in the waste management sector, Williams and associate Rajiv Malhotra successfully defended PB Donoghue in a £3m claim for damages arising from oral agreements made with a former HGV driver.

    In another key matter, Williams and senior associate Simon Carroll represented a local charity in a case arising from a gym operator’s failure to make payments and refusal to provide account to avoid fee increases.

    Employment

    B P Collins’ employment practice is ‘a pleasure to work with; the team is well organised and its lawyers give clear, full instructions and work hard to develop relationships with clients‘. It acts for a number of corporate clients and high-net-worth individuals on a range of employment matters, with notable strength in restrictive covenant matters. It also handles business immigration matters and focuses on issues arising from the automotive, IT, retail, manufacturing, construction and pharmaceutical industries.

    ‘Outstanding‘ practice head Jo Davis advised Number 8 Group, which provides construction workers to construction companies, on a possible £100,000 tax levy by the Construction Industry Training Board arising from a change in the law, which involved an analysis of the law around employment status for the purposes of the levy. In another key mandate, senior associate Chris Brazier (who is ‘organised, sharp and inspires confidence in his clients‘) represented TMD Technologies in an employment tribunal claim by one of its former senior managers alleging age discrimination and unfair dismissal.

    Other key figures include Kathryn Fielder, whose ‘guidance and direction are impeccable, and who demonstrates sensitivity and compassion to clients‘.

    Commercial property

    B P Collins’ commercial property practice is noted for providing ‘city-quality advice‘ and for ‘adding value to every part of a transaction‘. The firm has a particular focus on retail and leisure work, as well as residential development, mining and environmental matters.

    The practice’s workload is predominantly focused around the Thames Valley, although it also handles mandates nationwide for clients such as Lacoste. Other clients include Biffa Group and developer City and Provincial Properties.

    Alison Taylor heads the practice and has an extensive track record in portfolio management, acquisitions and disposals, and commercial lease transactions. The ‘efficient and knowledgeable‘ Maria Mowberry is also recommended.

    Environment

    B P Collins fields an environmental law team that is ‘very strong indeed‘, with clients singling out practice head Alex Zachary as ‘very thorough and will stick to his guns where required‘. The cross-practice team has extensive experience in all stages of the waste cycle, acting for clients in waste management, renewables and efficiency, as well as for waste-to-energy clients involved in renewable energy projects.

    In an illustration of the practice’s track record in the waste management sector, Craig Williams acted for PB Donoghue in a £3m claim for damages arising from JV/management/licence agreements made with an ex-HGV driver. Other recent highlights include advising Biffa on the acquisition of Amber Engineering, a waste management business in south Wales, and assisting the same client with updated terms for its project involving the collection and disposal of garden waste. Also recommended are David Smellie, who regularly handles commercial contracts and corporate transactions related to the waste management and renewables sectors, and Alison Taylor, who handles high-value commercial lease transactions for environmental clients.

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