Bird & Bird

has launched a new trade and customs practice in Europe, landing a four-lawyer team from Simmons & Simmons in the Netherlands.

Along with three associates, partner Jasper Helder will move from Simmons’ Rotterdam office to Bird & Bird’s office in The Hague. Helder is the fifth partner hire for Bird & Bird in The Hague this year.

Armand Killan, co-managing partner of Bird & Bird in The Hague, said: “In IP we grew by 100 per cent this year and we have a lot of big litigation pending.”

Helder’s practice focuses on the IP, tax and licensing aspects of the import and export of electronic goods and pharmaceuticals.

Killan said: “We talk with clients again and again about how to route their goods. Logistics are becoming more and more important. Jasper will also assist our other offices on how to advise clients on those issues. He will build up the practice across Europe.”

Simmons will continue to practise trade and customs law from its Rotterdam office. In response to Helder’s departure, Sjoerd Rutten, Simmons Rotterdam co-managing partner, said: “We’ve still got people in that practice area.”

Bird & Bird’s other laterals include Logica CMG’s Feyo Sickinghe and Arnold & Siedsma’s Marc van Wijngaarden.