Benelux boutique market continues to expand

Field Fisher Waterhouse of counsel Thierry van Innis has quit the firm to launch a IP boutique with a former colleague from Allen & Overy (A&O).

Van Innis has teamed up with A&O senior associate Dieter Delarue to launch Van Innis & Delarue, which will have offices in Antwerp and Brussels. A&O associate Heidi Waem is also joining the firm.

The founding partners’ clients include media and entertainment, designer goods, life sciences and e-commerce and technology companies.

Van Innis said many clients had praised the IP boutique model in other countries as somewhere where ”lawyers can be as passionate and innovative as they are about their brands, creations and inventions. Also, they deliver the right mix of experience and specialisation on one hand, and availability and a personal touch on the other hand”.

Delarue added that boutiques were more common in other practice areas than in the IP field in Belgium.

Meanwhile Dutch boutique Rutgers & Posch, which launched earlier this year with a group of partners from established Dutch firms (8 February 2013) has strengthened its team with two new partners. Stibbe insolvency partner Karen Harmsen and Linklaters counsel Kees Westerman will both bring associates with them.

Westerman joined Linklaters three years ago from Clifford Chance, where he was a partner in the structured finance team (8 March 2010).