The fourth partner to quit Andersen Legal's Sydney practice in as many weeks is returning to the UK to join Addleshaw Booth & Co's fledgling London office.
UK M&A lawyer Tim Bee, who has been with Andersens for two years, will join the 88-partner firm in November.
Earlier this month it emerged that three partners – including founding lawyer Phil Kapp – had left Andersens amid speculation of dissatisfaction with the accountant's Australian legal arm (The Lawyer, 18 October).
An Andersens spokesman denies Bee's departure is indicative of internal problems in the Sydney office.
He says: “There was a possibility that [Bee] was going to join Garretts in the North because that is where his parents are.”
One Australian source says: “Bee was seduced by the blandishments of Andersens but then, like Kapp and others, felt where Andersen wants to go is different to where he sees himself.”
An Addleshaws spokesman says the firm is expanding its London practice, which opened 10 months ago, and is taking another floor in its building in 60 Cannon Street to accommodate extra staff.
Andersen Legal has moved the newly appointed head of its European law firm network, Patrick Bignon, from Paris to London. He is the former head of tied French arm Archibald Andersen.