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US firm Seyfarth Shaw is opening a London office after poaching Norton Rose employment chief Peter Talibart.
The City office will be Seyfarth’s first base outside the US. The firm currently has 750 lawyers across 10 offices in the US including Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York and Washington DC.
“The London office is not a first step to us opening offices across Europe, nor is it an attempt to enter the UK with a full-service offering like other US firms,” said Seyfarth chairman Stephen Poor.
“Rather, it is about establishing a hub office to enable us to better service our clients and also to facilitate our close relationships with UK and European law firms who assist us across the region in all practice areas.”
Talibart, who will head the new office, added: “Seyfarth Shaw has the finest international employment law practice in the market and has been regarded as such ever since I started practising in this area.”
The London office is expected to open in 2011 and Talibart will be tasked with developing Seyfarth Shaw’s international employment practice, particularly in Europe and the Middle East. He joined Norton Rose as a partner in 2000 and became head of employment in 2004. He will be replaced as employment head by partner Paul Griffin.
Poor added: “Over the last three years we have been evaluating our need for an enhanced platform to best service our US clients’ international needs. Providing a scaled solution for our clients that is consistent with our proven approach to international work of this nature remains critically important.”
Seyfarth’s international labour and employment practice head Darren Gardner said: “Pete’s capabilities and credentials in Europe and the Middle East are second to none. He is widely known as both a terrific lawyer and someone who clients hold in very high regard, in particular as being practical and easy to work with. His international experience is extremely rare and extensive. He is a perfect fit for what we do and how we do it and we are very pleased to have him on board.”