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Exclusive: Mayer Brown halves trainee intake
25 July 2014
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Mayer Brown is slashing its September trainee intake by half.

The firm previously took on around 20 trainees every Autumn, but has confirmed to RollOnFriday that it is cutting its 2016 cohort to ten.

  For Mayer Brown's next trick

There have been a number of warning signs. In 2012 it offered trainees in upcoming intakes £10,000 each to defer for a year. And this spring the firm only retained two trainees out of a five-strong cohort.

A spokeswoman for the firm denied that this dramatic reduction demonstrates that Mayer Brown's growth plans for London are unrealistic. She said that the London office remained at the core of Mayer Brown's strategy, as demonstrated by "the scale of investment in London which saw seven new partners join the office during 2013 alone and significant revenue growth for the office". And in a surprising reality check for trainees who think they are at all relevant, she added that "the September 2016 London trainee intake has no real bearing on that strategy".

With luck the decision will at least improve the chances of those trainees that it does take on of remaining with the firm on qualification. Though unless the firm can improve its retention rate, their current trainees' best option may be to move to Paris to become fake partners.
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