Dechert

International Top 30 position: 16
Asia-Pacific International rank: 50

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The Asia Pacific profile is an edited version of a full write-up that appears in The Lawyer Asia Pacific 150, a comprehensive analysis of the legal market in the region that ranks the top 100 local firms and leading 50 international players by headcount. For more information and to purchase your copy please click here

Dechert’s London office grew 44 per cent in 2012 following a year characterised by aggressive hiring across the City. In terms of global revenue, the firm posted an 8.6 per cent increase to $729m.

This global revenue increase, up from $671m in 2011, could be down to a number of office openings during 2012. These include Kazakhstan, Chicago, Dubai and Frankfurt with hires from Mayer Brown and Dewey.

The firm’s London and Dubai offices recruited around 25 members of staff from its now defunct rival Dewey & LeBoeuf. The hiring frenzy saw a number of Dewey partners join Dechert’s City base, including corporate lawyers Louise Roman Bernstein and Camille Abousleiman, who in December advised on the debt restructuring of Kazakhstan-focused oil and gas group Max Petroleum.

The deal came months after the firm raided Chadbourne & Parke’s energy practice to launch an office in Almaty, Kazakhstan.

In London the firm has also expanded significantly. The recruitment ball began rolling in April 2011, when the London office hired DLA Piper’s joint global head of litigation Neil Gerrard and EMEA head of corporate crime and investigations Jonathan Pickworth. DLA Piper investigations and compliance partner Duncan Wiggetts and head of trade and government relations Miriam Gonzalez followed their lead months later.

That hiring spree continued into 2012, with notable hires including Herbert Smith’s Europe head of litigation, arbitration and employment Dmitry Kurochkin who joined the firm’s Moscow office, and Norton Rose litigator Antony Dutton.

Asia Pacific

No. of lawyers: 26
No. of offices: 2
Headquarters: US

By May 2012, Chinese authorities had awarded Dechert a licence and the Philadelphia firm appeared to be ready to launch in Shanghai its third office in Asia after Hong Kong and Beijing. But the Shanghai market was still waiting in mid-2013 for Dechert to open its doors in the country's financial centre.

Dechert has 26 lawyers in the region, including 7 partners, and its Beijing office is focused on a range of work, including cross-border mergers and acquisitions and public and private financings, advising on joint ventures and wholly foreign owned entities, licensing arrangements and commercial contracts, compliance and corporate governance issues, as well as dispute resolution, employment and real estate.

In Hong Kong, the firm concentrates on equally diverse practice areas such as advising funds investing in China, private equity and venture capital investments, exits and financings via capital markets offerings, outward strategic and financial investments by Chinese entities, financing transactions, securities and commercial litigation, internal and government investigations, securities-related and shareholders' disputes and regulatory matters.

Among its clients, Dechert has advised the investment arm of PRC state-owned enterprises in the establishment of private equity funds, and numerous Asia-based hedge funds and private equity funds.

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Overview

160 Queen Victoria St
London
EC4V 4QQ
UK

Global turnover 2012: $729m
Global lawyers 2011: 748
No. of lawyers (Asia Pacific): 26
No. of offices (Asia Pacific): 2
Headquarters (Asia Pacific): US