Finers works on strategy and image

West End firm Finers has elected a new managing partner and hired a new marketing director to up its PR profile.

The 30-partner West End practice, which was formed nine years ago from the merger of Gershon Young Finer & Green with Stein Swede Jay & Bibring, expanded from 16 to 29 partners in its first four years to 1992. But following the recession partners left and the firm has only recently recovered its 1992 level.

Commercial partner David Swede, elected managing partner in 1992, has stood down and was replaced by head of litigation Richard Gerstein on 1 December. And this month the firm recruited marketing director Monica Ralli, its third since American Linda Orton was appointed in 1992.

Partners feel the firm has been hiding its light under a bushel and the only publicity it has gained in recent years has been less than positive.

In 1994 its high-profile sports lawyer Mel Stein, who acts for Paul Gascoigne and Chris Waddle, was tried and acquitted of fraud in New Orleans.

Finers was in the news again in April last year when it paid more than £8m in an out-of-court settlement of a negligence claim by a former client, an Australian bank.