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Masons has closed its Dublin branch, a niche projects and construction practice, citing increased competition from the full-service domestic firms as the reason behind the decision.
The two partners who ran the office, Eamonn Conlon and Dudley Solan, are moving to A&L Goodbody, but seven assistants and the entire support staff are yet to decide on their future.
Masons’ Dublin lawyers are in talks with at least three major Irish firms, and all of the lawyers and support staff have been offered jobs elsewhere in Masons’ international network.
Masons senior partner Martin Harman said: “When we opened in 1998, the local law firms were unable to compete effectively, but over the years they’ve developed a skills base that they can offer as part of a one-stop service to clients.”
When asked why the firm did not choose to bulk up its offering in Dublin, Harman added: “It’s not our strategy to open offices around the world on a full-service basis.”
Masons insists that the Dublin office, which is believed to have made around E4m (£2.7m) last year, was always profitable.