Gearing up in Germany

A year after first announcing it was going to launch in Germany, Herbert Smith Freehills (HSF) has finally made good on its promise. Last week the firm announced it had hired a partner from its former German ally Gleiss Lutz to open in Frankfurt.

Corporate partner Ralf Thaeter is a solid appointment for HSF, but the firm’s German ambitions have already been scaled down. After originally declaring it would launch three German offices, the firm now says it will be content with Frankfurt.

But HSF is not the only international firm focusing on Germany right now. Linklaters has just hired Wilhelm Haarmann, who gave his name to Haarmann Hemmelrath before its collapse, while Watson Farley has followed up its Frankfurt launch with the hire of a trio of employment lawyers.

It’s not surprising. Germany continues to be one of the stronger European economies, as demonstrated by Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek’s confirmation of 3.7 per cent turnover growth this year, comparing favourably with the more static results reported from Spain.

Speaking of turnover, the deadline for the return of European 100 questionnaires is now just two weeks away. Contact joanne.harris@thelawyer.com with any queries.