Corporate lawyers invade Paris bar

The business law firm presence on the Paris Bar Council has been swelled with the election of partners from Bredin Prat, JeantetAssociés, Latham & Watkins and Taylor Wessing.

Taylor Wessing partner Paul Iweins was re-elected to his seat on the council in first place, securing 4,451 votes in the first round of voting. Iweins was the bâtonnier (president) of the council in 2002 and 2003.

Latham partner Dominique Basdevant joined Iweins on the council after the second round of voting, winning one of the 14 vacant seats.

Basdevant told The Lawyer: “I want to show that firms such as mine can participate just as well on the Paris bar and try to support the bar in all its actions. I want to show that the business bar has more to bring to the evolution of the profession. Everyone can bring his stone to the revolution.”

The result means Basdevant joins a small but increasing number of representatives of Anglo-Saxon firms on the council, alongside Willkie Farr & Gallagher partner Dominique Mondoloni, Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton partner Jean-Michel Tron and Clifford Chance partner Claude Lazarus.

There was success for representatives of independent French firms too. Jean-François Prat, senior partner of Bredin Prat, was re-elected in third place behind Bernard Vatier of independent business firm Vatier & Associés.

Vatier’s fellow partner Olivier Saumon was also elected, as well as JeantetAssociés litigation partner Jean Néret.

Meanwhile, Christian Charrière-Bournazel of two-partner French firm Charrière-Bournazel Ardilouze won the election to become the next president. Charrière-Bournazel will succeed BrandfordGriffith & Associés partner Yves Repiquet in the role.