France’s Gide seeks trainees in the City

French law firm Gide Loyrette Nouel is to hire trainee solicitors in London for the first time in a bid to bolster its burgeoning City arm.

The Paris-based firm, which launched its London office five years ago, plans to recruit at least two trainees from March 2009. This number is likely to be increased in proportion to the growth of Gide’s 57 fee earner London office, which is expected to add between 20 to 30 lawyers over the next five years.

Colin Mercer the partner responsible for trainees said: “Despite the rather gloomy economic prospects we have been very busy and plan to grow our London office significantly over the next few years.

“We offer the same quality work on offer at the major City and Wall Street firms but our training is less compartmentalised,” added Mercer.

Gide already has four trainees in London, all of whom were previously paralegals at the firm. The launch of the firm’s formal graduate recruitment programme coincides with the qualification of its first UK-based trainee Ricky Champion.

Gide plans to offer a rotational seat system similar to those offered at firms with established graduate recruitment programmes.

First year trainee salaries will be £36,000 and will rise to £40,000 in year two.