Dewey adds Charlotte to list of US office closures

Dewey adds Charlotte to list of US office closuresDewey & LeBoeuf has announced the closure of its office in Charlotte, North Carolina, just as it plans to open two new bases in the Middle East.

The 11-lawyer office, which has suffered due to economic conditions, is set to close on 31 December.

Earlier this year Dewey announced that it would close its offices in Austin, Hartford and Jacksonville as part of a move to focus on major capital markets.

The Jacksonville and Austin offices will close at the end of December, while Hartford will close in February.

A statement released by the US firm cited the changing market landscape and “the consolidation of several major banking institutions and a challenging structured finance market” as the reason for the North ­Carolina office closure.

The North Carolina banking market has seen dramatic developments in recent months, with Bank of America purchasing ­Merrill Lynch last month and Wells Fargo acquiring North Carolina-headquartered bank Wachovia.

In the Middle East Dewey, which opened in Dubai ­earlier this year after poaching a team from Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld, plans to launch in Abu Dhabi and Qatar by early next year.

Washington DC partner Kenneth ;Freeling ;and ­London partner Stephen Jurgenson will relocate to Qatar and Abu Dhabi respectively for the launches.

Firmwide chairman Steve Davis said: “The emirates of Dubai and Abu Dhabi, plus Qatar and Saudi Arabia, are at the forefront of some of the world’s most important inward and outward investment opportunities today. We already act for some of the most exciting clients in the region and view these investments as part of the firm’s ongoing commitment to represent clients across the world’s commercial centres.”