Summer sees firms slim down across Europe

Nobody wants to be carrying excess weight in the heat of the summer, and it seems law firms are no exception.

This week has seen confirmation of two more international firms shutting down European offices, adding to earlier news that Sidley Austin is pulling out of Germany and both Hogan Lovells and Norton Rose Fulbright have closed their doors in Prague.

The latest to slim down their European presences are Chadbourne & Parke and Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer.

Chadbourne is in the process of closing in Kiev. The months of political turmoil in Ukraine have taken their toll, leading the US firm to cut its losses. The good news is that other firms are hanging in there, with Chadbourne partner Adam Mycyk being snapped up by Dentons.

Freshfields, meanwhile, has spun out its Barcelona office into a new IP boutique. The decision to consolidate its Spanish presence in Madrid followed the departure of partner Antoni Valverde to Allen & Overy in February.

Whether the reason is changing market conditions or partner departures, the raft of closures shows that firms are constantly looking for ways to keep trim and nimble in the heat of competition.

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