David Birch worked at Wragges for 30 years and helped major corporates from the UK and North America invest in India.
Birch said: “My role is to assist in the implementation of the international strategy and develop overseas clients and connections generally. I’ve been working with India for the last 12 years, so have quite a good feeling for the market.”
Addleshaws is planning to have a network of referral firms in place by summer 2009, according to managing partner Mark Jones.
“At the moment we have two models in place – our core European model of two firms in each jurisdiction and our US model of half a dozen Midwest firms,” said Jones. “We think the US model will be more relevant to the Indian market.”
The Indian venture is being developed by senior partner Paul Lee, chief operating officer Peter Smith and partners Stephen Houston and Claire Northcote, who run the relationship firms programme between them.
Addleshaws, which does not currently have any branded overseas offices, has also begun looking at opportunities in the Middle East and the Far East, driven by its construction practice. The firm is understood to be looking at all major practice areas in India.
Allen & Overy signed a referral relationship earlier this year with Indian firm Trilegal (The Lawyer, 22 February), while Linklaters has a similar agreement with Talwar Thakore & Associates (The Lawyer, 14 December 2007).