Finers and Stephens Innocent merge

Niche media law firm, Stephens Innocent has announced its merger with property and commercial practice, Finers, after talks were exclusively revealed by The Lawyer magazine last week (1 November 1999).

The new firm will be called Finers Stephens Innocent and will operate from Finers' offices in Great Portland Street from December 14.

Richard Gerstein, Finers' managing partner will remain in that position in the new firm, while Stephens Innocent senior partner, Mark Stephens, will head up the international and media department.

Stephens enthuses: “Sometimes firms come together to create something more powerful, more exciting. I feel like Mick Jagger meeting Keith Richards in a pub for the first time. It'll be great fun for us.”

Gerstein says: “We have long admired Stephens Innocent and its brand and have recognised a need in our growing practice for the sorts of skills that this brand can bring our long established clients. We see this as a major coup.”

The merger boosts Finers' partner count from 34 to 37, although Stephens Innocent's influential copyright partner, Robin Fry also takes up a consultancy position as well as starting up his own internet company.

Stephens admits his firm was in merger talks with Rakisons, but opted for Finers not least because the latter agreed to take on more staff.