The College of Law is undertaking an internal review which may ultimately lead to its sale. Allen & Overy is believed to have been instructed, as has a mid-tier finance house.

At times the quality of the College's education may be debatable, but Chief Exec Nigel Savage has focussed on priming the institution for a big money sale. Staff have been made redundant, students at rival institutions have been hunted down for alleged unpaid fees, and turnover last year was a healthy £70 million. Which - despite the College's myriad failings - is bound to attract some interest. Fans of legal education will note that Apollo Group Inc. paid $607 million for BPP in 2009, so the value in the business model is clear.

    The College of Law goes on sale. How it may look.

But the College is a charity, incorporated by Royal Charter in 1975, and it has no shareholders or owners. So where will the money end up? The answer, amazingly, is not in Savage's back pocket. The business and assets will be hived down to a new company which could then be sold for a chunky wad of cash (the College has real estate interests alone worth £65 million). And the charitable shell left behind, awash with the proceeds, will HAVE to spend that money on advancing legal education (and not on sending staff on courses on how to apply make-up). So how to spend, let's say, £100 million or more on advancing legal education? Send in your suggestions here.

A spokeswoman for the College said "the Governors are currently undertaking a strategic review, as it is only right that the College considers options for its future development in light of exciting opportunities presented by changes in higher education. This is something we do, like every well governed organisation should, every few years."
Tip Off ROF


Anonymous 02 September 11 16:40

Here's hoping that the first thing the new owners do is to
Make me savage and his cronies redundant.

Anonymous 02 September 11 18:44

No money going to Nigel Savage? Past form might suggest a healthy bonus linked to the sale proceeds.

Anonymous 02 September 11 22:40

I suspect there will be a huge bonus (much bigger than the £1million per year the board is currently awarding itself, on top of their huge salaries) plus share options in the purchaser. And if Savage and co are kept on, then even huger salaries.

All this now explains the last few years of relentlessly grinding down CoL staff, redundancies, ever increasing workloads and daft amounts of money spent rebranding CoL as "world class" - they want to prepare to sell us out to be part of a multinational brand.

Anonymous 03 September 11 10:17

If this is true then it is utter madness. There is no reason to sell the College - or even to remotely consider the possibility. It is the market leader, it has all the resources it needs and it operates in a market that is by nature segmented into jurisdictions. the only reason it would ever be offered for sale is so that those offering it can pay themselves very well for pulling off the deal.

Anonymous 03 September 11 13:14

Doesn't the College of Law have a board of independent governors? aren't they supposed to be exercising general oversight of the management?

It looks like they have taken their eye off the ball in recent times and just allowed Savage and his chums to do whatever pleases them.

Anonymous 05 September 11 18:27

I'm sure this shambles of an educational establishment will find some way to line the pockets of the overpaid and underworked board. As an aside- perhaps someone should point out the 'myriad failings' to the spokeswoman as she seems to be under labouring under the misapprehension that the college is well governed!

Anonymous 05 September 11 21:29

I work at the College of Law and must say that the people who actually deliver the services - tutors, reception staff, maintenance guys, all the admin people - are wonderful. I've never had the pleasure of working with so many good people.

But once you get to management it changes completely. They are useless, spineless and overpaid. Every time the Board of management change something it is purely to justify their own (overpaid) existence - and it usually causes disruption and actually detracts from the "learning experience". Branch management spinelessly go along with all of it because that is, essentially, their job - to be spineless conduits. To make things worse we have just acquired yet another layer of management who get paid huge sums just to pass on edicts from on high - if they disappeared overnight it would not make one jot of difference (except the rest of us would be happier).

Every day the workload increases on those who actually do useful work. Tutors are now told that they are required to work any weekends or evenings that management require, for no pay. All the paid overtime we ever used to get is gradually becoming unpaid - and that is on top of a much harder working week.

The fact is that the College has been taken over by a bunch of greedy b******s who are now quite openly running the place purely for their own benefit. Students are beginning to sense this. I fear the College is in terminal decline - and it is all self-inflicted.

When will the Board of governors wake up and see the damage that Savage and co are doing?

Anonymous 06 September 11 23:09

Should we infer anything from the fact that the many staff who are (no doubt) watching this discussion has yet objected to the last comment?

Anonymous 07 September 11 16:49

My understanding as someone who works with (though not for) the COL, including their senior management, is that this entire piece is massively speculative and ultimately incorrect and misleading.

The fact that the headline states the COL IS up for sale, only for the leader paragraph to say '...which may ultimately lead to its sale' pretty much somes up the level of actual knowldge ROF have on this subject.

If ROF is as determined as it seems to be to categorically undermine everything the COL does, I would reccomend ensuring that future stories run contain facts, as opposeed to supposition poorly dressed as such.