William Fry swoops for Landwell IP team

Top five Dublin firm William Fry has carried out its second raid on PricewaterhouseCoopers’ (PwC) Irish law firm Landwell, poaching a rated contentious intellectual property (IP) team.

Landwell partner Carol Plunkett has quit the accountancy-tied firm with a senior associate. The small team will be reunited with former Landwell structured finance partner Orla Brennan, for whom William Fry swooped last year.

The loss of Plunkett will be another blow to Landwell, which has struggled globally to survive in the wake of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act.
Last month the firm’s global legal head Gerard Nicolai stood down, signalling the end of PwC’s ambitions to have an international legal network.

Until the William Fry raids, Ireland had escaped relatively unscathed and the firm still has another IP partner in Garret Breen. However, sources in the Irish market said there are now other Landwell CVs on the market. Landwell declined to comment.

Plunkett is one of Dublin’s top practitioners in the sector and was a partner at A&L Goodbody before her stint at Landwell. William Fry partner Brian Burke said: “Our main priority with Carol is access to her expertise; the question of whether she brings clients remains to be seen.”

William Fry, once a corporate boutique, has expanded considerably over the last few years. “We’re pursuing a growth strategy and this was an area where we saw potential,” commented Burke.