Gide Loyrette Nouel has absorbed the Paris office of Spanish ally Cuatrecasas Gonçalves Pereira, picking up partner Nuria Bové and three other lawyers to create an Iberian desk.
The Iberian desk will support Iberian and Latin American companies on their operations in France, as well as French clients on their operations in the Iberian Peninsula and Latin America.
The move follows the October 2014 “union” of the two firms’ Casablanca offices. Since teaming up with Germany’s Gleiss Lutz and Italian firm Chiomenti in a non-exclusive alliance the four firms have been growing closer and earlier this week announced the formation of a regulatory group based in Gleiss’s Frankfurt office.
Cuatrecasas senior partner Rafael Fontana said the move in Paris heralded a “new stage” in the firms’ partnership.
Separately four senior associates have quit Gide to establish a boutique, Almain. The quartet – Cécile Davanne-Mortreux, Jérôme Debost, Thomas Fleinert-Jensen and Edgard Nguyen – have all worked together at Gide for a number of years.
Davanne-Mortreux and Nguyen bring expertise in corporate law, Debost is an employment specialist and Fleinert-Jensen focuses on contracts and commercial litigation. The four are joined by two of counsel specialising in tax and public law.
The team’s past clients have included manufacturing and pharmaceutical companies, investment houses and private equity firms.
Fleinert-Jensen said the four had all separately harboured a wish to create their own firms, and had decided to team up for the new venture after discovering each other’s ambitions.
He said Almain would seek to offer clients the same “high quality” service the quartet was used to offering at Gide and develop closer relationships with its clients.
The firm would grow depending on client demand.
Almain is the latest in a steady flow of boutiques established in Paris by senior associates or partners from established firms. In 2013 a team of experienced corporate partners left Gide to set up BDGS Associés, which in 2014 added to its roster with the hire of Linklaters partner Marc Loy.