Partners from DLA, Houthoff and Stibbe team up for Dutch boutique launch

A team of partners hailing from DLA Piper’s Amsterdam office, Dutch independent Houthoff Buruma and former Herbert Smith ally Stibbe have joined forces to launch a Dutch boutique focusing on advice for corporate clients.

gerard endedijk rutgers posch
Gerard Endedijk

Rutgers & Posch launched on 1 February with a founding team of six partners and six associates.

The team is led by managing partner Gerard Endedijk, previously head of litigation at DLA Piper in Amsterdam. He is joined by Lennaert Posch, who headed the investment management team at Stibbe before leaving the firm in 2012 to look for a new challenge, DLA Piper employment partner Dirk Jan Rutgers, Houthoff Buruma corporate partners Matthijs van den Broek and Bas Visée, and Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer principal associate Hendrik Jan Schimmel, who joins as a partner.

The six associates are predominantly ex-DLA Piper.

Endedijk told The Lawyer that the motivation for the six to launch the boutique was both client demand and a search for a better work-life balance.

“We hope to achieve a better level of quality of life for ourselves and a better level of service for our clients,” he said.

He added that clients had said they no longer wanted to pay high fees for work to be done by associates. “We found ourselves as partners more managers than lawyers,” Endedijk added, of the team’s prior experience.

Endedijk said the partners had all known each other socially and through local bar events before teaming up. He added that Posch had been planning to launch his own boutique before deciding to join forces with the other partners.

Rutgers & Posch will focus on core daily matters for corporate clients, referring matters such as tax to other firms.

“Things are starting to roll, our clients are very happy and enthusiastic,” Endedijk added.

A year ago former DLA Piper Amsterdam managing partner Robert Broekhuijsen set up a corporate crime boutique with Houthoff counsel Jacqueline van de Bosch (11 January 2012). In Belgium, two groups of former Stibbe partners have launched boutiques. Employment boutique Younity was launched in the autumn (14 September 2012) by pensions head Corinne Merla and employment partner Jean-Philippe Cordier, while Olivier Clevenbergh, who led the alliance with Herbert Smith, set up Strelia at the start of this year (7 January 2013).