European moves: 16 May 2013

All the latest partner hires and other appointments within Continental European firms and offices.


Lithuanian litigation boutique Motieka & Audzevicius has launched a white collar crime group. The team will be led by partner Jovitas Elbergas alongside recent hires Vytautas Girzadas and Mindaugas Barkauskas. Girzadas was previously vice-director of Lithuania’s Financial Crime Investigation Service while Barkauskas was a criminal prosecutor.


German firm Noerr has announced plans to launch in Brussels within the next year on the back of a growing volume of regulatory work (3 May 2013). Noerr partner Alexander Birnstiel, who specialises in cartel work and co-heads the firm’s regulatory and governmental affairs department, will be in charge of developing the office.

Dechert has pounced on Shearman & Sterling’s Brussels managing partner Hans Jürgen Meyer-Lindemann in a boost for its EU competition practice in both Belgium and Germany (3 May 2013). Meyer-Lindemann will split his time between Dechert’s Brussels and Frankfurt offices.

Houthoff Buruma has hired Aldo Verbruggen as a partner in its white collar crime practice. Verbruggen joins the Dutch firm from niche firm Wladimiroff Advocaten.

Central & Eastern Europe

Czech firm Havel Holasek & Partners has hired White & Case senior associate Martin Jurecko as a partner in its Bratislava office. Jurecko practises real estate, mergers and acquisitions and corporate law.

Schoenherr has appointed a team of tax experts in Austria and Romania. Michaela Petritz-Klar has joined the firm as a tax partner in its Vienna office from Weber & Co, while Theodor Artenie, Oana Manuceanu and Mihaela Popescu will provide tax consulting services through Schoenherr Tax Bucharest SRL, a newly-launched separate legal entity affiliated with the firm’s Bucharest office. The team join from PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Wolf Theiss has promoted three female associates to its partnership. Banking and capital markets specialist Andrea Gritsch, who was appointed counsel in the firm in February, is made up in Vienna. Corporate and capital markets lawyer Natasa Lalovic Maric is promoted in Belgrade, and corporate counsel Ligia Popescu joins the Romanian partnership.


Racine has elected Valérie Ledoux and Nicolas Boytchev as co-managing partners. The pair replace Bruno Cavalié, who has led the firm since its foundation in 1981.

Gide Loyrette Nouel has boosted its structured finance and scuritisation team in London with the addition of two associates, Samir Bensaker and Jérémie Bismuth. Bensaker joins Gide from Allen & Overy in Paris, while Bismuth has moved to Gide from Orrick Rambaud Martel’s Paris office.


Dentons has announced its first lateral hires since the tripartite merger which formed the firm a month ago (7 May 2013). Michael Graf and Robert Bastian both join the firm from Haarmann. Graf is a tax specialist and Bastian a private equity partner. Corporate litigator Friedrich Toepel is also moving to Dentons as a counsel.

Latham & Watkins has secured the hire of three Shearman & Sterling partners to launch a Düsseldorf office (8 May 2013). Düsseldorf-based partners Harald Selzner, Rainer Wilke and Martin Neuhaus are all moving to Latham, bringing experience in corporate work for a range of sectors. Wilke also practises in the field of PPP and restructuring. Latham has also hired Munich arbitration and compliance partner Markus Rieder from Shearman and Frankfurt-based financial institutions counsel Frank Bierwirth from Allen & Overy.

Meanwhile Shearman confirmed the new shape of its Frankfurt office, which will be a corporate, capital markets, finance, tax and litigation-focused hub. M&A partner Thomas König and tax partner Bodo Bender have been named German managing partner and deputy managing partner. M&A partners Georg Thoma and Alfred Kossmann and finance partner Winfried Carli are relocating to Frankfurt from Düsseldorf.

Ashurst German corporate head Lutz Englisch is set to join US firm Gibson Dunn & Crutcher in Munich (2 May 2013). Englisch took over as practice head from Ashurst Germany chief Reinhard Eyring six months ago after joining from Siemens in 2007.


Portuguese firm PLMJ has launched an Italian desk, made up of lawyers who have experience in advising Italian companies. The desk is coordinated by tax partner Serena Cabrita Neto, who is an Italian national, with support from others including Lisbon-based Marta Costa and Célia Vieira de Freitas from PLMJ’s Lisbon office and Renata Valenti in Angola.


A group of lawyers from the Swedish offices of Ashurst and White & Case have joined forces with the former managing partner of Hannes Snellman’s Stockholm office to form a corporate boutique (9 May 2013). Baumgarten Byström Rooth & Tallavaara Advokater (BBRT), has been launched by Fredrik von Baumgarten, who served as managing partner of Swedish firm Vinge before moving to Nordic firm Hannes Snellman in 2008 to head up the Stockholm office. Two partners from Ashurst in Stockholm, Jan Byström and Mats Rooth, are also joining the boutique. The fourth partner at BBRT is Tuula Tallavara, who joins from White & Case in Stockholm where she was an associate. Like Rooth, she began her career as an associate at Vinge.


Dechert has appointed Francesca Albert as a national partner in its Moscow office. A litigator, Albert joins the firm from Herbert Smith Freehills where she was of counsel.

Dentons has promoted Dzhangar Dzhalchinov to partner. He is based in the firm’s Moscow office and is currently head of the Russian tax practice. Dzhalchinov was a legacy Salans lawyer.