Reed Smith London promotions slump to three” />The combined entity Reed Smith Richards Butler has made up three partners in London, significantly fewer than the total promoted between Reed Smith and Richards Butler last year.

Prior to their merger in January this year, in the 2006-07 period UK firm Richards Butler made up seven new partners, having promoted three in the preceding 12 months. In the 2006 calendar year Reed Smith made up three UK partners with four making partnership in 2005.

In its first round of promotions as a merged firm Reed Smith Richards Butler has promoted a total of 31 worldwide. The firm’s London managing partner Richard Swinburn said, while only three of these are in London, he does not feel the City office has been overlooked.

“It’s not low or high because we don’t look at ourselves on an office by office basis as an organisation,” he said. “All lawyers worldwide are divided into two departments – litigation and business, and regulatory, which is effectively transactional – and we look at it depending on the needs. Within the two departments there are practice groups that are organised on a cross geographical basis and the drive for promotion to partnership comes from the practice groups.”

The bulk of the new partners – 18 – have been promoted into the litigation department with the remaining 13 becoming transactional partners. In London, legacy Reed Smith associates James Wilson and Thomas Ince have been promoted in the corporate and employment practices respectively while legacy Richards Butler associate Emma Lenthall has been made up as a litigation partner. They all take up their positions at the beginning of the year.

Aside from two in Munich the remainder of the promotions have been made across the firm’s US offices.