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Tughans is set to become the first large corporate law firm to open an office in Northern Ireland’s second city Derry.
Corporate partner Killian Margey joined Tughans from Southern Irish best friend William Fry last October with a view to opening the new office, which will be launched officially on 1 May.
“Specialist corporate legal services have been outsourced to Belfast and even to London firms. Now businesses don’t have to go all the way to Belfast just to sign a contract,” said Margey.
Initially the office will be staffed by Margey and consultant William McCarter, who has 30 years’ experience in the local market and is chairman of the International Fund for Ireland, a US government-sponsored fund aimed at promoting cross-border industry.
The long-term plan is to staff the office with corporate, property, employment and commercial litigation lawyers. A property lawyer is the initial priority to assist with the city’s property developments. Derry has undergone a series of regeneration projects and benefited from substantial investment in the city’s infrastructure. Companies such as DuPont, Fruit of the Loom, Raytheon, Seagate Technology and Stream International now have bases there.
“Derry has never had a corporate law firm. I often wondered whether I could do it but you can’t be a one-man band in corporate law. You need the support of a substantial firm,” said Margey, who is from Derry.
Besides Derry and the Belfast HQ, the firm has an office in Lurgan, Co Armagh, which specialises in insurance defence work.