Polish firm snaps up Linklaters team after magic circle firm downsizes in CEE

A Polish firm has changed its name and rebranded after taking on two partners and a team of associates from Linklaters.


Polish firm snaps up <a class=Linklaters team after magic circle firm downsizes in CEE” />A ;Polish ;firm ;has changed its name and rebranded after taking on two partners and a team of associates from Linklaters.

Furtek Komosa Aleksandrowicz, previously known as M Furtek i Wspólnicy, has hired Linklaters stalwart and former Poland managing partner Tadeusz Komosa, who left the firm last year, along with current partner Mariusz Aleksandrowicz and managing associate Michał Mieciski.

Komosa was managing partner of Linklaters in Warsaw since joining the firm in 2001 until his retirement at the end of 2008. His practice focuses on cross-border corporate advice for Polish and international clients.

Aleksandrowicz was head of tax at Linklaters in Poland for eight years and brings with him a practice focused on the tax aspects of M&A, capital markets and project finance deals. Finally, Mieciski was a managing associate at Linklaters ­specialising in corporate transactions.

He joins Furtek Komosa ­Aleksandrowicz as a partner.

Joining them are Link­laters associates Edyta Jusiel and Jolanta Sawicka, who focus on litigation and employment respectively.

A ;spokesperson ;for Furtek Komosa Aleksandrowicz said “the firm intends to become a serious competitor of the top ­Polish and international law firms in Warsaw”.

The hires take Furtek Komosa Aleksandrowicz to around 20 lawyers and doubles the number of partners at the firm from three to six. The firm was set up eight years ago by Marek Furtek, who has become one of Poland’s most sought-after arbitrators.

The other two existing partners at the firm are Leszek Rydzewski and Anna Cudna-Wagner, who handle restructuring and litigation work respectively.

Warsaw is still considered a gateway to the legal markets of Central and Eastern Europe (CEE). Linklaters kept hold of its Warsaw office despite a review of its CEE capacity last year, which saw the firm spin-off its offices
in Bratislava, Bucharest, Budapest and Prague to form an independent law firm called ­Kinstellar.

After the review, the magic circle firm reshuffled its Warsaw management team after Komosa left, appointing a new managing partner, corporate specialist Cezary Wisniewski. Jolanta ;Tropaczynska replaced Wisniewski as Poland corporate head.

The importance of a strong base in Poland for firms looking to gain access to other markets was underlined when Spanish firms Uría Menéndez and Garrigues kicked off expansion drives in CEE with the launch of offices in Warsaw.

Uría Menéndez launched its Poland office last year, transferring partner Agustín Redondo to Warsaw to lead the expansion. In 2007, Garrigues acquired two-partner Warsaw outfit Fúster & Sartorius for its CEE launch, opening with a team of 15 lawyers.

Meanwhile, Bird & Bird launched four offices in CEE late last year in an ambitious push to gain work from new growth markets. The firm opened in Bratislava, Buda­pest, Prague and Warsaw, with former Linklaters technology and media partner Stephen Kines spearheading the initiative.