Stehlin & Associés, former Osborne Clarke alliance firm, moves into Shanghai

Stehlin & Associés, until earlier this year the French arm of Osborne Clarke’s European alliance, has moved into Shanghai in cooperation with Belgian firm De Wolf & Partners.

Stehlin has hired Bruno Lefébure as a partner to lead its Chinese ambitions. Lefébure was previously a partner with French firm Bignon Lebray, in charge of its Chinese work.

He joins Stehlin after six years at Bignon Lebray, having joined the firm from Haarmann Hemmelrath (26 June 2006).

Lefébure will work alongside De Wolf’s well-established Shanghai office, which has been in operation since 2004. De Wolf’s Shanghai office is headed by partner Philippe Snel with four associates.

Although the two firms will remain separate for regulatory reasons in China, it is expected that they will work closely together.

Stehlin, De Wolf and Dutch firm Ploum Lodder Princen chose to remain independent when Osborne Clarke moved to merge with its European allies earlier this year (29 March 2012). While the trio are not planning to merge they are intending to continue to cooperate.

Stehlin’s managing partner Marc Pierre Stehlin said the firm strongly believed in an independent model, in cooperation with a network of partner firms.