Retention mediocre at BLP, better at Clydes and DLA

Berwin Leigton Paisner (BLP) has retained 67 per cent of its trainee solicitors in newly-qualified (NQ) positions this September.

The firm said it had 24 final-seat trainees and will keep 16 of them on in NQ roles.

It marks a third successive year, and six successive retention rounds, when retention has been well below the market average at BLP. Last spring retention at the firm was 55 per cent, while last autumn it was 65 per cent.

The news was better at Clyde & Co, which held on to 35 of its 43 final-seat trainees (81 per cent), with one of them on a six-month fixed-term contract.

The bulk of the qualifiers – 31 of them – will work in the firm’s London office, with two based in Manchester, one in Guildford and one overseas in San Francisco.

As usual at Clydes, the insurance practice will accommodate the most NQs, taking seven. The real estate group (including projects and construction), will be home to five while the international arbitration team will take four, as will the professional disputes team. The corporate, aviation and ship finance teams all take three.

Marine takes two, while the remaining four qualifiers take up roles in the banking, employment, insolvency and healthcare teams. The result is Clydes’ best since 2014.

And at DLA Piper, 75 of 96 final-seat trainees (78 per cent) have been retained. UK managing partner Sandra Wallace, said: “In 2015, the firm had an above average trainee intake in the UK. We pride ourselves on our strong retention rates and, while this has resulted in our retention percentage being slightly lower than normal, we are delighted that this year we have been able to offer more NQ roles than in recent years.”