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Bird & Bird has formed an alliance with Beijing IP boutique Xiang Kung Law Firm, with the aim of strengthening its contentious capabilities in China.
This is only the second international alliance formed by the expansionist UK firm, which has grown massively over the past few years via office launches. Earlier this year Bird & Bird entered into an association with Singapore firm Alban Tay Mahtani & de Silva (2 December 2008).
Bird & Bird’s China head Matthew Laight said the firm had formed the Chinese alliance after regularly using Xiang Kung for contentious matters.
He added: “Xiang Kung is a small specialist IP firm in Beijing whose strengths are IP and contentious matters generally.
“We’ve been acting on contentious matters in China for about 10 years, but that work was always done in conjunction with local firms because only they have rights of audience.
“We’ve worked with individuals at Xiang Kung and they are great guys.”
While the tie-up will be non-exclusive for both sides, Laight said that it is likely that Bird & Bird will use Xiang Kung for all contentious IP matters.
He added that it is likely that secondments will also take place between the firms.
Bird & Bird has opened numerous international offices in recent years, opening in Bratislava, Budapest, Prague and Warsaw in one go last year (8 September 2008).