Field Fisher Waterhouse (FFW) plans to open in Munich and Düsseldorf after hiring a four-partner team from Howrey.
The offices – along with the firm’s current base in Hamburg – will be managed by the former managing partner of Howrey’s Munich and Düsseldorf offices, Joachim Feldges. The news comes days after FFW announced the hire of former Howrey London managing partner Mark Hodgson (7 January 2011).
Feldges will be joined by Howrey partners Thomas Adam and Jochen Herr, who will be based in Munich, and Christop Lenz, who will be based in Düsseldorf. FFW has also hired four associates from the US firm.
In a statement FFW said that while the initial focus of the new offices, which are expected to open in April, will be on IP and patent litigation, it eventually plans to expand the practice.
FFW managing partner Moira Gilmour said: “The new offices in Germany are part of a very focused plan for growth in the UK and Europe that we began in April 2010. Led by Joachim, who has a leading reputation in the patent field, the new offices will boost the firm’s multi-jurisdictional IP capability – a key aspect of the firm’s strategy.
“Over time we plan further growth, bringing in additional expertise across our corporate, IP and technology and regulatory practices.”
Feldges added: “Field Fisher Waterhouse has a leading reputation in the media and technology sectors, with a strong regulatory practice and a growing life sciences capability that prove an excellent fit with our patent litigation practice.
“The projects to build a multinational patent practice for Field Fisher Waterhouse and to strengthen the operations of that firm in Europe’s largest economy represent both exciting and highly demanding challenges.”
In October last year a 12-partner team left Howrey to set up IP boutique Hoyng Monégier (11 October 2011).
In an interview with The Lawyer this week, managing partner Bob Ruyak said the firm planned to spin off the remainder of its European IP practice – with the exception of Paris – and instead focus on antitrust and competition (10 January 2011).