European moves: 9 January 2014

All the latest partner hires and other appointments within Continental European firms and offices.


Dutch firm Kennedy Van der Laan has elected Bart de Man as its managing partner. He succeeds Casper Schouten, who served on the Board since 2010. Patrick Wit has also joined the executive board. De Man has been working at Kennedy Van der Laan since 2001, and is a banking and finance partner, while Wit heads the firm’s ICT group. Schouten will resume his practice as a real estate partner.

Nauta Dutilh has promoted two lawyers to its partnership. Barbara Rumora-Scheltema specialises in corporate and commercial litigation and insolvency law, advising and litigating for national and international clients. Meanwhile Sjoerd Meijer has been a lawyer at NautaDutilh since 2008 where he mainly advises and litigates in the areas of insurance and liability law.

Central & Eastern Europe

Romanian firm Ţuca Zbârcea & Asociaţii has promoted three lawyers to its partnership and 10 to the role of managing and senior associate. Corporate lawyers Cristian Radu and Dragoş Apostol were made up alongside IT specialist Vlad Cercel.


US firm Brown Rudnick is expanding into Paris through the hire of litigation partner Sébastien Bonnard from boutique Lacourte Raquin Tatar (16 December 2013). The French team will also include partner Nicholas Tse, who joined Brown Rudnick’s London office early last year from Gide Loyrette Nouel. Bonnard, also a former Gide lawyer, worked alongside Tse in the past. He will bring a team of lawyers and trainees with him to Brown Rudnick, including senior associate Hervé Le Lay.

French firm August & Debouzy has boosted its private equity practice with the hire of partner David Malamed from Weil Gotshal & Manges (8 January 2014). Malamed joined Weil two years ago from Gide Loyrette Nouel, where he was also a partner. He specialises in acting for financial institutions on financing and restructuring, as well as litigation. He will be heavily involved in developing August & Debouzy’s funds capabilities, particularly when it comes to restructuring.

A new corporate boutique has been created through the merger of teams from two existing small Paris firms, led by six partners with experience of international practices including Clifford Chance (7 January 2014). Dethomas Peltier Kopf Juvigny (DPKJ) has been formed through the merger of Dethomas Kopf, a boutique founded just last year, with a team from established boutique Vigiué Schmidt Peltier Juvigny. Partners Frédéric Peltier and Olivier de Juvigny have led a team of associates, including senior lawyers Didier Fornoni and Thibaut Reymond who become partners at DPKJ, to the new firm, which will also include Dethomas Kopf partners Arthur Dethomas and François Kopf.

Group deputy general counsel Dominique Bourrinet is to take the chief legal role at Société Générale (SocGen) (24 December 2013). His promotion will take effect from 1 January 2014, once his predecessor Gerard Gardella begins his new post as adviser to the bank’s corporate secretary. Bourrinet has been SocGen’s deputy GC for just three months, having previously headed legal for the corporate and investment side of the bank since 2010.

SBKG & Associés has hired King & Wood Mallesons SJ Berwin Paris partner Vincent Lassalle (17 December 2013). Lassalle, a real estate specialist, joins SBKG along with two lawyers. He was formerly a partner at legacy firm SJ Berwin.

Darrois Villey Maillot Brochier has made one lateral hire and two promotions to its partnership. Arbitration specialist Laurent Aynès joins the firm to help grow its litigation and arbitration team. He is an academic and a professor at the Sorbonne law school. Meanwhile the firm has promoted M&A counsel Forrest Alogna and litigator Matthieu Brochier to its partnership.

Gide Loyrette Nouel has appointed five equity partners across several offices and practice groups. In Paris, competition lawyer Dimitri Dimitrov, employment specialist Guillaume Navarro and corporate lawyer Antoine Tézenas du Montcel are all made up. Outside France, Warsaw finance head Paweł Grześkowiak and London structured finance head Dimitrios Logizidis both join the equity partnership.

Morgan Lewis has hired employment partner Sabine Smith-Vidal from Allen & Overy’s Paris office. Smith-Vidal advises clients on all aspects of labour and employment law.

Jean-François Vilotte has joined De Gaulle Fleurance & Associés as partner to strengthen its expertise in the sector of major public projects. Vilotte was most recently president of France’s online gaming regulator Arjel.

Paris boutique Szpiner Toby Ayela Semerdjian has hired employment lawyers Helyett le Nabour and Gwenaëlle Teissèdre from Orrick Rambaud Martel. The duo, who were associates at Orrick, both join the firm as partners.

Bird & Bird has appointed Driss Bererhi as a partner in its Paris office. Berehi joins the firm from Willkie Farr & Gallagher, where he was consel. He specialises in project finance.

Racine has hired Samuel Crevel as of counsel to strengthen its public and environmental law group. Crevel was most recently working at France’s Court of Cassation.

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer has named Vincent Le Baron as the new secretary-general of its Paris office. Le Baron joined Freshfields in 2011 as head of HR, and will continue to oversee this function.


Deutsche Bank is hiring Linklaters partner Florian Drinhausen as co-deputy general counsel for Germany and Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) (20 December 2013). Drinhausen will join the bank on 1 February 2014, after a decade as a partner at the magic circle firm. He will report to German and CEE general counsel Christof von Dryander, who was hired from Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton last year, and work alongside the incumbent co-deputy general counsel Mathias Otto.

King & Wood Mallesons SJ Berwin finance partner Thomas Schrell is joining Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek’s Frankfurt office (17 December 2013). Schrell joined legacy SJ BErwin in 2008 from Reed Smith. The firm has also appointed two new partners and nine new salaried partners in internal promotions effective 1 January. Both new partners are in Düsseldorf. Georg Jacobs is a competition specialist while Holger Lüders is an employment specialist.

Noerr has announced a number of promotions as well as lateral hires. Kolja Dörrscheidt, Tibor Fedke and Anke Meier become equity partners. Litigator Dörrscheidt is based in Berlin and Frankfurt, while fellow litigation specialist Meier works in the Frankfurt office. Fedke is a Berlin corporate lawyer. A further six lawyers were appointed as senior counsel, Noerr’s salaried partner equivalent: Daniel Krannich, Daniel Rücker, Rusandra Sandu, Tanja Schramm, Ingo Theusinger and Sebastian Voigt. A further 13 lawyers became associated partners and four counsel. The firm also hired partner Cornelia Kermel and two associates from Sammler Usinger, and Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer principal associate Maximilian Uibeleisen as associated partner to strengthen its energy group. Freshfields financial regulatory law principal associate Jens Kunz is also joining Noerr.

McDermott Will & Emery has appointed compliance lawyer Karin Holloch as a partner in the firm’s Düsseldorf office. Holloch joins the Firm from the Metro Group, where she was in-house counsel.

Graf von Westphalen has promoted associate partners Gerd Schwendinger and Marco Zessel to its equity partnership. Schwendinger is a partner in the firm’s Hamburg office, advising on state aid issues, while Frankfurt-based Zessel is a corporate specialist. Meanwhile Karsten Kujath, Hans-Joachim Lagier and Felix Wolf were appointed associated partners.

Oppenhoff & Partner has promoted employment lawyer Jörn Kuhn to its partnership. Kuhn has been a lawyer at the firm since 2007. The firm also elected a new partnership board and management committee. The former will consist of senior partner Michael Oppenhoff, Oliver Kessler, Rolf Koerfer and Gilbert Wurth and the management committee will comprise Axel Bödefeld and Marc Hilber. Michaels Abels is stepping down from the partners’ and Gert Dittert and Stephan König from the management committee.


Latham & Watkins has hired Cuatrecasas Gonçalves Pereira partner Ignacio Balañá as a partner in the corporate department in Madrid. Balañá has extensive experience advising on complex M&A deals, with particular expertise representing private equity firms and funds on a wide variety of cross-border matters.

Portuguese firm PLMJ has promoted four lawyers to its partnership, as well as 10 new senior associates and an international senior associate. The new partners are employment lawyer Nuno Ferreira Morgado, litigator Rui Alves Pereira, and banking specialists Duarte Schmidt Lino and Maria da Conceição Cabaços.

Gómez-Acebo & Pombo has appointed two new partners. Corporate lawyer David González Gálvez joins the partnership in Madrid and employment lawyer Juan Antonio de Lanzas Sánchez in Valencia.


Mason Hayes & Curran has elected litigator Declan Black as its new managing partner, replacing Emer Gilvarry (12 December 2013). Black will take up the role in April 2014. He won a contested election for the position, although the firm would not confirm who stood against him. Gilvarry has served six years as managing partner, having replaced Declan Moylan in 2008.


Danish firm Gorrissen Federspiel has promoted real estate lawyer Jesper Avnborg Lentz to its partnership. Avnborg Lentz trained at Gorrissen Federspiel and started work there in 2004.


Baker Botts has hired Linklaters counsel Mikhail Semyonov as a partner in its global projects team in Moscow. Semyonov’s experience covers energy and oil and gas in particular, with clients including Rosneft and Gazprom.