Olswang hires turn focus on Reading

Olswang hires turn focus on Reading” />Olswang has vowed to ramp up its Thames Valley office with the hire of its first chief executive and the recruitment of Microsoft UK’s key outside counsel.

The firm has hired Paul Wilson, the chief executive of Birmingham barristers’ chambers St Philips, to run its Reading operation. The firm has also swooped for Celia Nortcliff of IT boutique the Law Offices of Marcus J O’Leary, who has been Microsoft UK’s outside counsel for around 15 years.

Senior attorney at Micro-soft Gillian Austin said: “Celia has been a trusted adviser to Microsoft for many years and we look forward to continuing working with her at Olswang.” Wilson will have completed five years at St Philips when he joins Olswang in January 2006. During that period he has increased revenues from £8m to £20m. He will sit on the Olswang board and join the central management team that comprises chief executive officer Jonathan Goldstein, senior partner Mark Devereux and chief operating officer Kevin Munslow.

Goldstein explained: “We have historically found that Kevin Munslow has always had a very important role in pushing the business forward together with me and Mark Devereux. We wish to replicate that role in Reading.

Nabarro Nathanson probably have very good reasons for pulling out of Reading, but we believe the opposite… I don’t believe that since we’ve taken over the business [from Garretts in 2002] we’ve maximised the opportunities there. Now we’ll maximise them.”

Corporate partner Marshall Leopold was Olswang’s unofficial managing partner in Reading and will now focus on full-time fee-earning.