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French law firm Bureau Francis Lefebvre is set to join the CMS network on 1 March 2001, giving the organisation a presence in France for the first time.
The firm is one of France's largest, with 72 partners. Although known for its tax work, it is also strong in M&A, banking and finance, commercial property, project finance and telecoms.
International managing partner Pierre Thill says the move is important, as UK firms are highly regarded in France for their transnational and transactional work. He says: "Although we're often used for designing the structure of big international mergers, when it comes to transactional work, very often a UK or a US firm is involved.
"The move with CMS won't change the work we do, but over the last few years we've recruited a number of US and UK transactional lawyers, and now we can realise the potential of our transactional capability."
CMS now has members in the UK, The Netherlands, Germany, Austria, Switzerland and France.