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Irish law firm Arthur Cox has promoted the head of its commercial department to managing partner in a move to become the top corporate practice in the Republic.
Eugene McCague replaces commercial property partner Ian Scott as the head of the firm. Scott has served eight years and will continue to practise at Arthur Cox.
"We are very much a corporate firm and my appointment does underline our focus on that whole area," says McCague.
"We would see ourselves as the leading firm on corporate finance in southern Ireland, and my main aim is to build on that."
Arthur Cox is ranked third in terms of size in the Republic, with 43 partners. It is the only southern firm to have an office north of the border, and also has one in New York.
Ireland is a rapidly growing economy and business is booming, with many predicting law firm expansion. McCague says his firm has not been approached by any potential merger partners, but would not rule it out. "I haven't heard of any English firms looking to move over here - it has not come up as an issue yet. We would look at anything that came up, though," he says.
He is planning mergers and acquisitions and corporate finance growth both north and south of the border. The firm already boasts Aer Lingus and Irish telecommunications leader Eircom among its commercial clients.