White & Case is making its second bid for a London real estate practice after securing two property partners to set up the group.
Lawrence Graham partner Lorraine Ufland and David Cox, a senior associate at Tite & Lewis, are due to join the US firm as partners to work across the practice groups.
Until now White & Case’s London office has outsourced its property work to Penningtons and SJ Berwin.
In 2000 the firm attempted to build an in-house capability, recruiting Louise Anderson from CMS Cameron McKenna, although she left the firm and the law a year later.
Few US firms in London have tackled building a credible real estate group, although there are exceptions. Gibson Dunn & Crutcher, which took on Nabarro Nathanson’s Alan Samson, is one, and Paul Hastings Janofsky & Walker, which has steadily built up a solid reputation, is another.
White & Case, Lawrence Graham and Tite & Lewis declined to comment.
White & Case has also introduced a new management structure in London. Each of the firm’s seven section heads will sit on the newly-created executive committee, while the former executive partner John Bellhouse will now become the firm’s senior partner.