Lovells is gearing up for the implementation of Italy's corporate law reform in January 2004 by hiring two chartered accountants. Domenico Borzumato and Serena Pietrosanti, were previously with Deloitte & Touche in Rome and before that were with Studio di Consulenza Legale e Tributaria, part of Andersen Worldwide. To comply with Law Society rules, both accountants will qualify as lawyers in Italy so that they can join the Lovells partnership. The hires are a significant step in Lovells' development in Italy. The firm has had an Italian tax practice, led by partner Fulvia Astolfi, since opening in 2000, but Borzumato and Pietrosanti will be its first specialists to be dedicated full-time to tax matters. They will work alongside two partners and four other fee-earners who split their time between tax and other areas. Lovells' Italian head Paolo Criscione said: "After nearly three years' investment in developing a healthy client base here in Italy, we've reached the stage where it's appropriate to offer a stand-alone tax practice, rather than a resource primarily devoted to support on corporate and finance transactions." The hires are timely given that Italy's corporate law reform is paving the way for greater flexibility in corporate structures and hence a more significant role for tax advisers.