Leading lawyers lead:: Legal firms to merge | Herald Scotland


Never mind the opportunity for “Alternative Business Structures” with this and another recent high profile, potential, merger, proactive Scottish legal firms are showing other Professions that, decisiveness in uncertain times, is certainly possible. We can only hope they can really seize the opportunity to innovate and to differentiate their client proposition. 

After all, when your marketplace is already crowded with, at best, “stagnant” demand, slugging it out on price with increasingly desperate competitors to provide legal services to firms whose own financial pressures mean they can ill-afford to pay for the services they need and CAN’T afford to do without!

Conventional economics may be flawed but, when supply, significantly, outstrips demand and is scheduled to do so for the foreseeable future dynamic leadership is required.

The aim is to grow in the private client arena with the team there increasing in size by 30% with the incoming staff.

The firm will still be known as Tods Murray with offices in Edinburgh and Glasgow but will now have 35 partners and 188 fee earners.

It comes less than a week after McGrigors and Pinsent Masons announced that they were in advanced negotiations over what would be one of the biggest mergers seen in the Scottish legal sector.

David Dunsire, executive partner at Tods Murray, said: “We are delighted as we believe Fyfe Ireland will be a really good fit for our practice.

“In Greig, Drew and their Fyfe Ireland team, we have gained some of Scotland’s best talent. A merger is not just defensive in this economic climate but is really about building for the future.

via Legal firms Tods Murray and Fyfe Ireland to merge | Herald Scotland.

Flooding in Scotland: A consultation on Potentially Vulnerable Areas and Local Plan Districts


I don’t know how relevant this will be to many readers but IF you have any slight concerns about your own home or business property there is a decent chance that your insurers will want to “consider the implications”. So this is my bit of Public Service broadcasting… forewarned is fore-armed and all that!

The assessment and more detailed data is available by following the link. 

For the first time in Scotland, a National Flood Risk Assessment has taken place which provides an accurate picture of flooding impacts across Scotland.  The new national assessment has considered all sources of flooding to identify the areas most vulnerable.  The National Flood Risk Assessment has identified that in Scotland one in 20 homes and one in 14 businesses are at risk of flooding.

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Scottish finance industry update: Green Investment Bank


Following on from last weeks report from PwC (see below) we now have the efforts being made to lure GIB to Edinburgh. Unless I am very much mistaken, it makes sense on every level…except, perhaps, a Political one!!?

It would certainly continue “sit well” with the, recently announced, Glasgow-based “Renewable Energy Zone”.    

Why should the Green Investment Bank come to Edinburgh?

We think there’s a compelling case for Edinburgh over and above any other city in the UK, including London. Really that’s based on Edinburgh’s ‘three-legged stool’ if I can call it that of expertise in financial services, asset management and renewable/low carbon energy. Our academic research base is also strong, with dedicated clean energy research centres at University of Edinburgh, Heriot-Watt University and Edinburgh Napier University. We don’t believe there’s any other location with this combination of assets – apart from London. The problem with London is that it’s the metropolis and a green investment bank will take its place among the other agencies and departments of government. Whereas in Edinburgh, it would be highly visible and mobile in terms of its contribution to the rest of the UK…

Lobbying for the UK Green Investment Bank to be located in Edinburgh

 

I was out and about yesterday and only realised this morning that the content has gone missing! The PwC report said they needed to act quickly but if they made the right moves there was a potential to double the number of jobs in the sector – currently at almost 100,000, as new banks moved into Edinburgh and Glasgow to recruit from those being shed by the traditional lenders. Tax powers More collaboration – within the industry and with universiti … Read More

via Get "fit for randomness" [with Ontonix UK]

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Scottish finance industry reaches ‘watershed’


I was out and about yesterday and only realised this morning that the content has gone missing!

The PwC report said they needed to act quickly but if they made the right moves there was a potential to double the number of jobs in the sector – currently at almost 100,000, as new banks moved into Edinburgh and Glasgow to recruit from those being shed by the traditional lenders.

Tax powers

More collaboration – within the industry and with universities and colleges – is required to improve the industry’s international standing and attract inward investors, it said.

There is also a warning about uncertainty over tax rates as a concern for business, as Holyrood prepares to take on extended tax powers.

Stephanie Bruce, a financial services specialist at PwC, said: “Without urgent action Scotland could continue to fall down the international rankings and, crucially, the rate of decline could accelerate.

“With political debate focusing on the challenges posed by the public sector cuts, particularly in the run-up to the Scottish elections, we need to work effectively as an industry to ensure that support for financial services remains firmly on the agenda.”

via BBC News – Scottish finance industry reaches ‘watershed’.

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Glasgow named an IBM Smarter City: an’ ‘ers mair, nae kiddin’


MagnanimityWe really excel when it comes to presenting ourselves in the poorest possible light to the outside world. Ask other nationalities what is the first image of Glasgow to be conjured up and it is likely to be this one of grown men behaving badly. Strangely, on this occasion, the one with the red hair and anger management issue isn’t a native…but I think the point is made!

So, if it’s not the Old Frim going toe-to-toe, it could, just as easily, be drunks singing, urinating, sleeping or fighting in the street. Not good and not a fair representation but perhaps WE should do more…

Last week was a HUGE week for Glasgow. In truth I am sure that it will turn out to be a hugely significant week, at least for the Scottish economy but, I would hope, the UK economy.

Strangely though, unless I am missing more of the mainstream news than I first thought, it is a week during which the most significant news – no, NOT the spillage of thousands of cans of Stella Artois on M74 – will have bypassed all but the most conscientious [business] newshounds. Having said that The Times do deserve a special mention for the excellent article in Saturday’s issue, quite rightly, praising the exceptional work of Prof Jim McDonald, the principal at Strathclyde University. Now there is a man who deserves a Knighthood! I covered this item and another in a recent blog:

SCOTTISH BUSINESS NEWS: old values + new tech. = brighter future Read more of this post