SJ Berwin hopes Indian intake will help build ties

SJ Berwin hopes Indian intake will help build ties” />SJ Berwin is the latest firm preparing to establish a foothold in the Indian market, with four Indian trainees joining its London office in September.

In preparation for a relaxation of India’s regulatory environment, which is expected to happen during the next two years, the firm visited the Bangalore International Law School earlier this year to recruit a group of students to take part in the new scheme.

Five selected students have since completed a month’s work experience in the firm’s London office and four of those are returning to the UK to begin traineeships in September.

SJ Berwin managing partner Ralph Cohen said: “The quality of these students is very high, so it’s an investment for the firm. We’re very interested in the opportunities that India provides and these trainees will be able to teach us more about Indian law.”

Last September SJ Berwin travelled to India to visit 10 local law firms with a view to developing stronger relationships before regulatory amendments.

Cohen said: “We’ve been to India a number of times and we’ll continue to visit. This is part of exploring the opportunities we have. We’ve already started the process of finding new recruits for September 2008.”

As reported by The Lawyer last week (7 May), Herbert Smith has embarked on a similar traineeship programme, with the firm’s India group head Chris Parsons visiting Bangalore earlier this year to sign up two trainees and six interns.

The expectation is that the interns, who will spend time with the firm in June and July, will also be signed up as trainees.