Baker & McKenzie chooses Belfast for legal services unit
Global law firm Baker & McKenzie is to set up a new Global Services Centre in Belfast, creating 256 jobs, consolidating Northern Ireland's position as the leading global centre for Legal Process Outsourcing (LPO) operations.

The new centre will comprise over 70 staff in legal services and 185 in administrative global services providing HR, IT, payroll and billing services, among other support lines. Baker & McKenzie is the world's largest law firm by revenues after recently announcing annual income of $2.54billion. The firm has almost 11,000 employees in its 76 offices in 47 countries. It provides a full range of legal services to many of the world's largest multinational companies and the LPO unit in Belfast will be the firm's first legal services unit. Baker & McKenzie will be the first tenant for at Belfast Harbour's flagship office scheme, City Quays 1, pre-letting two floors totalling 28,000 sq ft.

Arlene Foster said: “This highly significant investment, by Baker & McKenzie, the world's largest law firm, is another vote of confidence in what Northern Ireland can offer international professional services firms. Baker & McKenzie considered a number of locations around the world but, through the excellent work of Invest NI, and the advocacy of other international investors, including what they heard when they attended the Investment Conference last year, the company chose Northern Ireland.'

Baker & McKenzie will begin recruiting in September with the jobs to be created over the next three years, offering an average salary of GBP31,000. Invest NI is supporting the investment with an offer of GBP1,280,000.

Eduardo Leite, Chairman of Baker & McKenzie, said: "This investment will further enhance our ambition to lead our profession globally and offer our clients exceptional service wherever they are in the world, while benefiting the local economy through the creation of hundreds of new jobs."

Jason Marty, Executive Director of Baker & McKenzie Global Services Belfast, said: "Through our visits to Belfast earlier this year and meetings with Minister Foster, Invest NI and other international firms that have Northern Ireland operations, we were persuaded that Northern Ireland offers an excellent location for our needs. We believe we can offer great opportunities to legal and other professionals in Northern Ireland wanting to work for the world's largest law firm."

In 2011 Allen & Overy LLP, one of the world’s largest international law firms, set up a new support and legal services centre in Belfast while Axiom, a LPO firm, set up operations in 2012.