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The theory goes that lawyers take a break over Christmas, come back with New Year’s resolutions and, by March, have got something in place. Hence this is the time of year that we see partners and teams move, mergers announced and clients’ deals signed.
That might explain why Addleshaw Goddard and Nabarro began discussing the prospect of a merger, only for the talks to be called off after a brief flirtation.
One development that certainly wasn’t a resolution for 2013 was Scottish firm’s Semple Fraser’s intention to call in the administrators, which it has confirmed in an email to staff, a day after we reported the firm was reviewing its strategy “for the future of the firm”.
Clifford Chance has made a giant stride to bulk up its Saudi base by taking on co-operation partner Al Jadaan’s transactional team and Baker & McKenzie has been eyeing expansion in the Middle East too through merger talks with top Emirati firm Habib Al Mulla.
But the biggest New Year’s resolution was surely made by Nabarro, which entered consolidation talks after previously dismissing a tie-up, and appears to be right in the centre of the merger game. How long before Nabarro goes the way of BLG, Hammonds and McGrigors, we wonder?