Haarmanns to open London office early

German firm Haarmann Hemelrath is opening a temporary office in London – a month earlier than planned – because of the volume of work already flooding in to the founding partners.

According to M&A specialist partner Jay Birch, potential clients have been scrambling to contact the firm since news of its City venture was confirmed last week in The Lawyer.

Birch, who was poached from the Manchester office of Hammond Suddards, says that the early opening will accompany a massive recruitment drive to staff the permanent office in the former NatWest Tower with 50 lawyers within three years.

Other Haarmann Hemelrath offices – particularly in Paris, Munich and Tokyo – have generated business for the London team, while Birch and fellow partner Philip Newhouse are also thought to have drummed up interest through their existing contacts.

Birch says: “We are getting a temporary office in March due to popular demand. The NatWest Tower should be ready by April, when we planned to open, but it always takes longer than you think and we have already got so much work waiting for us.

“We also need a banking partner and have got our eye on a couple of people. They will inevitably be lateral hires because of the quality of person we want. Interviewing will begin soon.

“Otherwise our recruitment is the equivalent of taking on a lawyer a month for the next three years. Haarmann Hemelrath already has 17 offices across the world and this one will get up to speed in terms of staff and workload as soon as possible.”