British Virgin Islands (BVI) firm Forbes Hare is launching a contentious advisory practice in its London office in what is believed to be the first move of its type by an offshore firm.
However its hire of former barrister Alistair Abbott, who was most recently a senior associate at SNR Denton (now Dentons following the firm’s recent merger with Fraser Milner Casgrain and Salans) is understood to be the first effort by an offshore outfit to offer litigation advice from the City.
Abbott, who becomes a partner at Forbes Hare, has been admitted to the BVI bar and will spend part of his time in the BVI.
Forbes Hare managing partner William Hare likened the move to that of several other offshore firms which have launched litigation teams in Asia in recent months. Hare said there was demand from clients for litigation advice from offices outside the Caribbean, and launching a team in London would offer time-zone advantages to clients in Europe, the CIS, the Middle East and Africa.
For more on the BVI, see this week’s offshore special report