Squire Sanders poaches team of eight for Ukraine office relaunch

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Squire ;Sanders ;& Dempsey has relaunched its office in Ukraine after taking an eight-lawyer team from its former local ally The Silecky Firm.

Silecky partner Peter Teluk joins as managing partner of the Squire Sanders office, along with a team of seven associates, in a move that sees the firm open its own independent office in Kiev for the second time.

Squire Sanders was one of the first international firms to open in Kiev when it arrived in 1992. But in 2004 the firm transferred all its lawyers to Silecky, signing an alliance agreement which expired this year.

Squire Sanders Europe practice coordinator Mark Cusick said it had wanted to focus on Moscow at the time.

“We were simply making a decision about resources and preferring Moscow over Kiev,” he said. “You could say it was a mistake. But the right thing to do now is get back in and go twice as hard.” Squire Sanders focuses on corporate transactions in the telecoms sector in Ukraine. At the end of last year its lawyers advised Vimpel Communications on its $4.3bn (£2.18bn) acquisition of Golden Telecom.

The firm has focused on Central and Eastern Europe as an area of international growth this year. In February it took two tax lawyers from Gide Loyrette Nouel’s Warsaw office, as well as Russia energy specialist Steven ;Sprague ;from Troutman Sanders.