Lovells has solved its Spanish problem with the recruitment of Cuatrecasas’ Madrid head of corporate Jose Maria Balana de Eguia, who will open a Madrid office for the firm.
Balana will formally resign from Cuatrecasas, Herbert Smith’s best friend next week. He and Lovells have a list of partners at top Spanish firms whom they will now try to cherry-pick in order to quickly build up a full-service office.
As revealed by The Lawyer (17 March 2003), the firm abandoned merger talks with its Spanish best friend and rated corporate boutique Albinana & Suarez De Lezo. The firm then decided the best way to plug the gap in its European network was to open a greenfield Madrid office.
Lovells and Balana declined to comment.