Shearman & Sterling beefs up Abu Dhabi by 10

Shearman & Sterling has embarked on a major expansion of its Middle Eastern practice, transferring three partners and seven associates to its Abu Dhabi office.

London-based property partner Ian Nisse will move to the Abu Dhabi office in 2010 joining partner James Comyn. Earlier this year The Lawyer reported on Comyn’s move to the Abu Dhabi office in December (22 September).

Paris M&A partner Manuel Orillac will relocate to Abu Dhabi in mid-2009. The office expansion includes the transfer of seven Shearman associates from the firm’s London, New York and Rome offices.

The firm is also hiring a number of associates in its Abu Dhabi office including Linklaters Kelly Li and former ICC International Court of Arbitration director, Lara Hammond.

The expansion almost doubles the size of the Abu Dhabi office, bringing the total number of lawyers on the ground from 16 to 30.

Shearman senior partner Rohan Weerasinghe said: “We are experiencing significant growth across practice areas in the Middle East. We have met our clients’ needs by bringing in lawyers from our other international offices and from outside the firm.”

Shearman has undergone significant partner relocations in recent months announcing New York-based head of international strategy, Creighton Condon as its new European head in October.

The moves come after the US firm revamped its management structure in April this year and elected partner Anthony Ward to London managing partner earlier the same month.