Firm profile: Howrey Simon (London)

Howrey Simon Arnold & White’s London outpost is among the most successful of the US firm’s international outposts, reporting a fee income for 2004 of £8.8m, up by £1.9m on 2003’s figure.

Management team (London):

James Irvine, Isabel Davies and Peter Fitzpatrick
Turnover: £8.8m
Total number of partners: Seven
Total number of lawyers: 21
Main practice areas: Competition litigation, IP and IT
Key clients: Coca-Cola, DaimlerChrysler, Intel, Procter & Gamble and Ryanair
Number of offices: 11
Location: Amsterdam, Brussels and London, plus eight in the US

Howrey Simon Arnold & White’s London outpost is among the most successful of the US firm’s international outposts, reporting a fee income for 2004 of £8.8m, up by £1.9m on 2003’s figure.

The focus of the firm’s UK outpost is on IP, IT and competition litigation. This mirrors its approach in the US.

“One of the things clients select as our selling point is that we can bring together these three areas,” says James Irvine, a Howrey litigation partner based in London. “We’re practically unique worldwide in the way we’ve integrated [these practice areas] so thoroughly.”

While it is intent on following Howrey’s global strategy in this way, the London office is also committed to building its own client base so as not to be reliant on referrals from the US side of the practice.

Although roughly half of its work comes from such referrals, which involve a mixture of IT, IP and multijurisdictional fraud work, of which Irvine and Charles Pugh, the office’s administrative partner, are particular experts, the office has established a solid base of US as well as UK clients. This has been achieved through a number of key lateral hires.

A key example is Isabel Davies, Howrey’s London head of IP and previously head of Eversheds‘ IP group. Although she has been based in the UK all of her professional career, she managed to bring to the firm an impressive US client list, including Elvis Presley Enterprises, Intel and whiskey manufacturer Jack Daniels. She represents all of them on IP matters, particularly trademark disputes. Trademarks as a whole represent around one-eighth of the firm’s work.

Davies’s longstanding relationship with the US arm of Coca-Cola has also developed since she joined Howrey three years ago – she acts regularly for the drink company’s European operations. The firm’s relationship was further entrenched when fellow Howrey partner, litigator David Stone, went on a one-year secondment as trademark counsel for Coca-Cola’s Western European operations.

Another of the firm’s key clients is Ryanair. London litigation head Peter Fitzpatrick has been the airline’s UK legal counsel for the past five years and is currently representing the budget airline in its competition-related battle with the British Airports Association (BAA) over claims that the airport owner set exorbitantly high fuel levies.

Worldwide, the firm boasts 231 partners and a total of 525 lawyers, with offices in 11 locations, including three in Europe in Amsterdam, Brussels and London.

Howrey Simon