The Lawyer Africa Elite 2014 features an in-depth look at 46 leading independent firms’ strategies in 15 key sub-Saharan jurisdictions, as well as the views of in-house counsel from some of Africa’s largest companies... Read more
This year, The Lawyer’s annual ranking of the largest UK law firms by turnover is available as an interactive, digital benchmarking tool. For the first time this will allow you to manipulate each data set against the metrics of your choice.
Denton Wilde Sapte (DWS) is increasing its secondments to the Middle East following the firm's rapid expansion in the region.
As revealed in this edition of The Lawyer (page 7), DWS chairman James Dallas is moving to the Dubai office to head the energy and infrastructure practice group.
The firm currently has four secondees in the Dubai office, which includes one dispute resolution partner, Michael Kerr.
Dubai HR director Teresa Wong says: "We don't recruit anyone externally for secondment. All secondments are from within the firm and they tend to be from the London office."
Secondments usually last a year, but can be up to three years, and are perceived internally as critical for career progression. For example, corporate specialist Neil Nicholson was made up to the partnership at the same time as being seconded to the Dubai office two years ago.
Dallas says: "Gaining experience in a smaller office, where you come into contact with clients probably on a much more regular basis, is excellent for lawyers, especially trainees."
However, DWS is adamant that secondment is not a sure-fire fast-track to partnership promotion.
"It's not a fast-track career option, but it does help certain individuals to gain more experience," says Wong. "The work they do in the Gulf can provide experience that they may not be able to gain if they remained in London."
The most popular Middle East secondment destination for DWS lawyers is Dubai, followed by Muscat. The firm's recent opening in Qatar is also a popular secondment destination and with the launch of other local offices the management is predicting increased interest in the region.