Chicago firm has designs on HK

Chicago firm Peterson & Ross is planning to open a Hong Kong office, the senior partner at its London branch has revealed.

Michael Skrbic said the move was part of an ambitious global expansion plan for the insurance specialist which includes the opening this month of an office in San Juan, Puerto Rico and a recent affiliation with a Philippines firm.

Skrbic, previously an insurance partner at McKenna & Co's Hong Kong office, said he would be visiting Hong Kong this week with Petersons' chairman Ted Boundas.

He added that a decision about opening an office would be made quickly.

Petersons' new Philippines affiliate Amodar & Associates already has an office in Hong Kong which Petersons is currently using, but Skrbic said the firm would prefer to have its own presence in the territory.

Skrbic claimed that by opening offices in “strategic locations” around the world, his firm could offer a “seamless international service” to clients.

“Clients just are not willing to hire different law firms in different geographical regions any more,” he added.

Boundas said the Puerto Rico office would help Petersons' insurance clients with expanding business in the Caribbean and the central and south American markets.

The recent affiliation with the Philippines firm was to exploit business opportunities throughout Asia, he added.

Petersons' London branch, which opened at the end of last year, was the firm's first international office.