Magic circle firm Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer has lured an expert in business transformation and shared services from the insurance industry to run its new ‘legal and business services centre’ in Manchester. Anup Kollanethu was previously managing director, transformation and global shared services at Aviva Investors, which he joined in 2008 from Aviva Insurance.At Aviva, Kollanethu was part of a corporate transformation team that cut costs by more than £400m a year, leading to 800 redundancies in the UK. Freshfields declined to comment on whether it plans any redundancies as part of its ‘northshoring’ move, which involves relocating back-office services from its London headquarters in Fleet Street. Kollanethu has been appointed as director of the new office, which will open in the second half of 2015. Freshfields said that Kollanethu will work with corporate partner Gareth Stephenson, who will set up the legal services operations in Manchester. Stephenson has run a pilot project in London for the past 18 months and will lead the transition and implementation in Manchester.David Aitman, managing partner at Freshfields, said: ‘Anup’s extensive experience in building and managing shared services centres, together with his business and technology acumen will be of great value to us in establishing our Manchester office.’Freshfields confirmed that it has signed a lease to take up 40,000 square feet at Arndale House in Manchester from July 2015, and said it plans to grow its legal and business services centre further in 2016. It is also said to be looking to rent 100,000 sq ft for a larger move in 2017.Estate agents estimate that Arndale House will accommodate one person for every 100 to 120 sq ft, suggesting that the firm will initially locate 330 to 400 staff in Manchester.This could lead to at least 150 job losses in London, assuming the 55% transfer rate based on magic circle Allen & Overy’s experience when it made a north-shoring move to Belfast.By the same calculation, the larger move in 2017 would involve between 830 and 1,000 staff working in Manchester, implying job losses of 375 to 450 staff in London, possibly extending to other offices across Europe.
In a year in which their overall defense was maligned for much of the season, the Orioles took home three 2012 American League Gold Glove awards on Tuesday night.Shortstop J.J. Hardy, catcher Matt Wieters, and center fielder Adam Jones won hardware as Baltimore nabbed three defensive awards in the same year for the first time since 1998. The Orioles’ three winners were the most of any team in baseball this season.The Orioles’ overall defense struggled for much of the season, but the trio of defenders was exceptional at their respective positions throughout the year.Perhaps the most deserving of the Orioles’ three winners was Hardy, who nabbed his first Gold Glove after a remarkable season at shortstop. The 30-year-old infielder committed only six errors and posted a career-high .992 fielding percentage to lead the AL. His fielding percentage was the highest by an Orioles shortstop since Mike Bordick had a .998 mark in 2002.Hardy also led AL shortstops in games (158), putouts (244), assists (529), range factor per game (4.89), defensive wins above replacement (2.8) and total zone runs (21).He is the fourth Orioles shortstop to win a Gold Glove, joining Luis Aparicio (1964 and 1966), Mark Belanger (1969, 1971, 1973-78), and Cal Ripken Jr. (1991-92).Rangers shortstop Elvis Andrus and Seattle’s Brendan Ryan were the other AL finalists at the shortstop position.The 26-year-old Wieters took home the AL award for the second straight year despite committing a career-high 10 errors and five passed balls. However, the strong-armed catcher threw out 38.6 percent of runners attempting to steal — third in the AL — as he built upon his reputation as one of the best defensive catchers in the game.His 994 putouts were the third-most in AL history for a catcher and the most since former Yankees catcher Jorge Posada had 996 in 2001.Detroit’s Alex Avila, Yankees catcher Russell Martin, and Chicago’s A.J. Pierzynski were the other finalists at the catcher position for the award.Earning his first Gold Glove since the 2009 season and second overall, Jones surprisingly edged out rookie sensation Mike Trout for the center field honor. The 27-year-old committed eight errors and had a .982 fielding percentage, but managers and coaches around the league love Jones’ range and strong throwing arm. Jones led AL center fielders in putouts (439), ranked second in range factor per game (2.75), and third in assists (seven).Jones is one of three Orioles outfielders who have won Gold Glove awards, with Paul Blair (1967 and 1969-75) and Nick Markakis (2011) being the others.In addition to Trout, Jones edged out Tigers center fielder Austin Jackson for the AL honor.This marks the 18th season in which the Orioles have won multiple Gold Glove awards in the same year. Their three winners were the most the Orioles have had in a season since 1998 when pitcher Mike Mussina, second baseman Roberto Alomar, and first baseman Rafael Palmeiro each claimed one. It’s the ninth time in club history the Orioles have had at least three winners.Sixteen different Orioles players have earned a total of 64 Gold Glove awards since the honor was created in 1957. It’s the second most in the AL and one fewer than the New York Yankees.