UK & Ireland
The quartet include Jim Boff, Martin Hammler, Arthur Boff and James McAllister, who will be joined by a number of support staff. The team focuses on a range of IP, including patents, trademarks, designs, domain name registrations and copyright. They also provide advice on IP strategy.
Dentons has hired Dublin disputes lawyer Karyn Harty from McCann FitzGerald as its new head of litigation for Ireland.
Clifford Chance has created a U.K. head of inclusion role, as the industry seeks to improve its standing in many areas of diversity and inclusion. The law firm has appointed Nina Goswami to the new position.
The firm has hired Emmet Quish from Dillon Eustace, where he was a lawyer for over 17 years according to his LinkedIn profile, specialising in asset management and investment funds.
Damian Fleming will bolster the firm’s London team from September, having spent the last 16 years at BCLP, originally joining legacy firm Berwin Leighton Paisner. The last five years have been spent as managing partner of the firm’s Manchester office.
Matthew Hardwick has spent the last 13 years at Norton Rose Fulbright, seven of which were as partner, according to his LinkedIn. He will join Akin Gump in September, according to a person with knowledge of the situation.
Carsten Loll joins the firm after five years at Linklaters, where he was a partner in the Magic Circle firm’s real estate group.
Winfried Carli joins the recently-launched Munich office having spent his entire professional career at Shearman, including 14 years as a partner.
Former Perkins Coie counsel Chris Grogan is re-joining the firm in Los Angeles from his role as general counsel of California fintech startup Stealth, while Steve Davis is moving across to its Portland office after 15 years at rival Seattle firm Davis Wright Tremaine.
A general counsel at Bain Capital, David M. Hutchins, is moving to Ropes & Gray as a partner in its private equity practice. The move further solidifies the Boston-based law firm’s longtime “symbiotic” relationship with the private equity giant, even as Ropes continues to face increasing firm competition in the PE world.
Ashurst’s Singapore ally ADTLaw has hired a senior M&A team from local powerhouse Allen & Gledhill. The team is led by partner Tao Koon Chiam, who has joined the firm as head of M&A for Southeast Asia. Partners Xiaozheng Ko and Yi Ming Choo have moved over with him alongside counsel George Kho.
Promotions & Appointments:
Stanton Towne has retired as Savills’ North American executive vice president and general counsel after more than 14 years with the London-based real estate company. He is succeeded by James Repking, who joined the company in December as associate general counsel.
Mergers & Alliances:
Clyde & Co is opening a permanent office in Chile as part of a merger involving its local partner firm Grasty Quintana Majlis and construction lawyers Halpern Pino as it seeks to further Latin American growth.
Office Openings & Closing:
Steffen Schniep, who also led the Big Four accountancy firm’s global M&A practice, will join Eversheds Sutherland in the autumn ahead of the office’s planned launch in January.
The office, the firm’s third in Europe after London and Brussels, will be led by partner Carla Schoonderbeek, who has joined from Dutch firm Hoyng Rokh Monegier along with newly-minted partner Bart Jong.
Managing partner Rob Shooter took over from Michael Chissick, who led the firm for a decade. Shooter, Fieldfisher’s former head of the technology, data and outsourcing practice, has made European growth a key goal of his tenure. This could include office openings, but also greater integration between the firm’s current bases.
News that Gray’s Inn Tax Chambers has increased its pupillage award by 43 per cent, from £70,000 to £100,000, has been met with shock by sources within the barrister community. The enormous leap means that the specialist tax set is now believed to be offering the highest pupillage award at the Bar. Pupils will have the option to draw down £25,000 in advance to cover postgraduate legal training fees.
Average profit per equity partner (PEP), newly-qualified (NQ) salaries and revenue are all up at Trowers & Hamlins since a shake-up in management in April 2021. For NQs in London, this month the firm upped their salaries from £72,500 to £80,000. Junior lawyers in the regions will now earn £60,000, a £13,000 jump (equivalent to 28 per cent) from the £47,000 they were earning before.
Norton Rose Fulbright (NRF) has increased its NQ salaries from £95,000 to £105,000, an 11 per cent uplift. The firm said in a statement newly-qualified lawyers who achieve the required hours may also receive a bonus between £118,125 to £147,000, inclusive of base salary and performance bonus.
Addleshaw Goddard’s global revenue increased by 18 per cent to £377mm over 2021/22, while total profit rose by £21m to £155m. The previous year, the firm’s revenue smashed through the £300m barrier, posting a figure of £321m.
Despite slower revenue growth during the financial year 2021/22, the U.S. offering was its saving grace. While the firm did not provide specific revenue breakdown for its jurisdictions, global managing partner Alan Mason told Law.com International that the U.S. drove “a significant portion” of its 10% revenue growth.
Charles Russell Speechlys’ financial growth has shrunk after a standout 2020-21 year, including a drop in profit per equity partner (PEP). Its PEP slid down by 1.3% to £526,000, marking it an outlier in a bumper crop in PEP increases this year among law firms announcing their April 2022 year end results.
Technology & Innovation:
The UK government is investing a further £4m to boost digital transformation in the legal sector as it strives to become the go-to market for digital legal innovation. The new investment from the UK Ministry of Justice (MoJ) will deliver the second phase of the Lawtech UK programme, which was launched in 2019 when the MoJ invested an initial £2m to kickstart the initiative.
The research, by content marketing software provider Passle, underscored that the explosion in online content during the Covid-19 pandemic shows no signs of abating. Smaller firms are catching up with their larger rivals, however, with those with more than 1,500 lawyers seemingly struggling to give their experts a voice in the market.
More than a year after the European Union became the first entity to propose regulations governing the use of artificial intelligence, the U.K. has now released a policy paper revealing what its own regulatory approach to AI could look like in a post-Brexit world. While both the U.K. and the EU ultimately aim to protect similar core principles, such as transparency and safety, the U.K. offers a unique approach for other regulators looking to draft their own laws—one that aims to avoid overregulation and remain future-proof as new technologies continue to emerge.
Diversity & Inclusion:
The debate over how removed law and ethics should be from one another is as old as the law itself. Good thing, then, that we don’t need to get bogged down in all that right now. The question for now is, given the role they play in society and the business world, should law firms be ethical bellwethers, or is it right that they stay ethically neutral when considering an instruction?
A Law.com International survey of over 30 firms highlights the sectors where firms are more likely to decline instructions, as firms ramp up ESG policies following the Ukraine war. Law firms have traditionally been reluctant to draw ethical lines in the sand. The profession prides itself on the premise that everyone is entitled to legal representation. But recent events have forced them to start taking an ethical stance where they might not have previously.
Ukrainian Legal Developments:
Amnesty International said Sunday it “deeply regrets the distress and anger” caused after it alleged that Ukrainian forces were flouting international law by exposing civilians to Russian fire. The rights group said, “We fully stand by our findings,” but stressed that “nothing we documented Ukrainian forces doing in any way justifies Russian violations.”