Ex-Allen & Overy partner joins Houthoff Buruma for New York launch

Dutch firm Houthoff Buruma has recruited a former Allen & Overy (A&O) partner to launch a New York office, capitalising on the use of the Netherlands as a venue for class action settlements.

The firm has hired Helena Sprenger to head the new venture. Sprenger was a partner at A&O until 2009, where she headed the firm’s Dutch and Netherlands Antilles practice from New York. She has spent the past three years running her own firm in the city.

The new office will focus on corporate, finance and insolvency work but will also work on developing the firm’s capabilities in class action work from the US to the Netherlands. Dutch courts are leading the way in providing an alternative venue for settlement of actions where the US courts have refused jurisdiction (26 March 2012).

Joint managing partner Johan Rijlaarsdam said the office would provide the means for closer cooperation with Houthoff’s existing US referral partners.

The new office will be located in the Midtown district of New York.