European moves: 20 September 2012

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


Sorainen has hired its sixth Lithuanian partner. Kęstutis Švirinas joins the firm from Nordia Baublys & Partners, where he was managing partner for five years. He will co-head Sorainen’s litigation team alongside Renata Beržanskienė.


A trio of partners from Benelux firm Stibbe and Field Fisher Waterhouse (FFW) have teamed up to launch a Brussels employment boutique (14 September 2012). Younity will launch on 1 October with a team of 13 lawyers. The boutique is headed by Stibbe’s pensions head Corinne Merla and employment partner Jean-Philippe Cordier, who have teamed up with the co-head of FFW’s Brussels employment team Olivier Rijckaert for the launch.

NautaDutilh partner Pim Rank has been appointed as a professor of financial law at the Faculty of Law of Leiden University, having terminated his professorship at Radboud University Nijmegen. He will work within the Hazelhoff Centre for Financial Law of Leiden University, which has been established to conduct research and to offer education in the area of financial law. Rank will continue to practise at Nauta.

Central & Eastern Europe

French firm Gide Loyrette Nouel has restructured its Hungarian management team, appointing partner Eszter Kamocsay-Berta and lawyer Ákos Kovách as co-heads of its Budapest office (19 September 2012). While the duo will take over day-to-day control of the office, it will remain under the supervision of property partner François d’Ornano who is returning to Paris.

Czech firm Peterka & Partners is opening in the Belarusian capital Minsk. The office will be led by recently appointed partner Zdeněk Bajar alongside three local lawyers. It will provide clients with full-service advice.


Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer has appointed Weil Gotshal & Manges’ French head of finance, Emmanuel Ringeval, as a partner in its finance team. Ringeval will bring with him a team of associates although it is yet unclear how many will make the move to Freshfields (10 September 2012

Simmons & Simmons has turned to Linklaters’ Paris office for projects partner Simon Ratledge. Ratledge focuses on project financing and projects work in energy and infrastructure transactions in North Africa in particular.

DLA Piper has expanded its employment team in Paris with the hire of partner Philippe Danesi from Bird & Bird (14 September 2012). Danesi has joined the firm with associate Marie-Astrid Bethonod, also from Bird & Bird. Fellow associate Carole Hériot is due to join the team soon from Flichy Grangé Avocats.

Morgan Lewis & Brockius has hired Christian Nouel, a tax partner at Paris-based STC Partners and former tax head at Latham & Watkins’ Paris office (6 September 2012). Nouel has advised on the tax aspects of a large number of high-profile M&A transactions and leveraged buyouts.

Stehlin & Associés, until earlier this year the French arm of Osborne Clarke’s European alliance, has moved into Shanghai in cooperation with Belgian firm De Wolf & Partners (13 September 2012). Stehlin has hired Bruno Lefébure as a partner to lead its Chinese ambitions. Lefébure was previously a partner with French firm Bignon Lebray, in charge of its Chinese work.

French firm Adamas has hired Salans of counsel Germain Sinpraseuth as a partner in its Chinese practice. The firm now has three partners in Asia in its Beijing and Shanghai offices.

Holman Fenwick Willan has recruited Pierre-Etienne Kuehn as a consultant in its Paris office. Kuehn joins the firm from AXA Group, where he was the head of legal and compliance. He will work in Holman Fenwick’s insurance group.

Canadian firm Fasken Martineau has hired Bernard Dalex as a partner. Dalex was previously a partner at Gravel Leclerc & Associés, which merged with Fasken Martineau in 2009, and most recently was a partner at DPLR.

August & Debouzy has hired a third partner for its government and regulatory practice. Hugues Moutouh has worked in government for the past five years and was also a prefect since 2009.


Ashurst has appointed tax specialist Heiko Penndorf as a partner in its Frankfurt office (18 September 2012). Previously a partner at Mayer Brown in Frankfurt, Penndorf advises on the tax aspects of various M&A, finance real estate and capital markets.

Düsseldorf firm Hoffmann Liebs Fritsch & Partner has hired Luther’s real estate head Michael Fritzsche and Luther senior associates Ulrike Freigang and Stefan Hitter as partners. Thomas Michaelis is also joining Hoffmann Liebs as an associate. Fritzsche leaves Luther after reaching the firm’s retirement age.

Meanwhile Luther recently hired IP/IT lawyer Jörg Alshut as a partner in Berlin. Alshut joins the firm from GSK Stockmann + Kollegen with associate Kathrin Helbig.

Graf von Westphalen has hired Sebastian Wiendieck as a senior associate in its Shanghai office. Wiendieck is moving from Schmitz & Partner Rechtsanwälte in Frankfurt.

The firm has also hired IP/IT lawyer Joachim Mulch from Noerr. Mulch will be a partner in Graf von Westphalen’s new Düsseldorf office.


Iberian firm Cuatrecasas Gonçalves Pereira has appointed new members of its board of directors, which will see the roles of chairman and chief executive separated for the first time (14 September 2012). The firm’s former managing director Rafael Fontana will take on the executive responsibilities which were previously undertaken by firm executive chairman Emilio Cuatrecasas.

Portuguese independent Sérvulo & Associados has elected Lino Torgal as the firm’s new managing partner (17 September 2012). Torgal, who most recently co-managed the firm’s public law, projects and regulatory practice groups, has been responsible for the firm’s international relations. He was first made partner at the firm in 2005 and subsequently promoted to senior partner in 2008.