Law firm Martineau has been re-appointed as the legal adviser to the property portfolio of the West Midlands local government pension scheme.
The Birmingham firm won a competitive tender process to continue its work with the West Midlands Metropolitan Authority Pension Fund, which administers the regional section of the local government pension scheme (LGPS) – one of the largest public sector pension schemes in the UK, with 3.5 million members.
Martineau has worked with the pension fund for more than nine years, advising on a wide range of legal issues.
Susan Kembrey, the solicitor to the fund, said: “Martineau has always given sound practical advice and a high level of service in respect of the fund’s diverse legal needs across its nationwide portfolio and the tender process highlighted the continued quality of their offering. It is also gratifying to keep money in the regional economy and to support local business.”
Martineau was named Law Firm of the Year at the Birmingham Law Society Legal Awards.
James Spreckley, a partner in Martineau’s commercial property group, said the renewal of the contract was another sign of success at the firm.
He added: “People often focus on new ways to win business, but it is good to be reminded that doing your job well and providing innovative solutions to legal issues is still key to retaining client loyalty.
“And, of course, being voted Law Firm of the Year by Birmingham Law Society is never going to hinder your chances of winning local business.”
Martineau’s work with the fund involves helping to manage the national property portfolio of the fund, and dealing with relationships with tenants.
The law firm recently advised the fund on its acquisition of the ASDA store in Great Barr, in a deal worth £36.5 million. It is expected to bring in an annual rent of more than £2.3 million and guaranteed income to the fund for about 30 years.
The contract is being handled by the property team at Martineau’s offices on Colmore Square. The firm’s real estate practice is traditionally known for its public sector work, particularly in education.
The firm is known for its links to the education sector. Even on the financial side of the business, the latest major deal completed was when it advised on the purchase of an education firm that trains students in how to make a career in the music industry.
The firm advised Armstrong Learning on its acquisition of Midlands firm Access to Music (ATM).
The public property sector has held up relatively well compared to the parlous state of the commercial property market.
Senior partner Roger Blears said property developers needed to be investigating the opportunities presented by the government in the form of state aid.
This year, the firm sent its largest-ever number of delegates to the MIPIM property conference in Cannes.