Holman Fenwick to gain São Paulo base with BLG joiners

Holman Fenwick Willan has been gifted a foothold in South America following its acquisition of an eight-strong team of partners from Barlow Lyde & Gilbert (BLG).

Holman Fenwick will gain an office in São Paulo – its first base in South America – when aviation partner Jeremy Shebson joins the firm from BLG on 17 October.

The firm has taken over BLG’s office lease in the city and has also taken on the two associates and one PA that are permanently based in the office – aviation specialist Shebson will split his time between there and London.

Holman Fenwick is now exploring its options for the São Paulo office, in terms of how the firm is registered in Brazil and how it can use its presence in the country to leverage its other practices.

“We’ve take over the BLG office in its entirety and we’re now looking to see what opportunities that gives us and how we develop it from there,” said James Huckle, Holman Fenwick’s commercial director. “São Paulo is home to a lot of aviation claims work, but it’s also a regional hub.”

Shebson was part of BLG’s eight-strong global aerospace and aviation team, which was reported as defecting to Holman Fenwick in March (24 March 2011). Following the completion of their notice at BLG, the partners are due to join Holman Fenwick next week, bringing with them 16 associates (including the two in Brazil).

The other seven partners joining Holman Fenwick from BLG are: Sue Barham (London), Peter Coles (Hong Kong), Richard Gimblett (London and Dubai), Mert Hifzi (Singapore), Nicholas Hughes (London), Giles Kavanagh (London) and Keith Richardson (Singapore).

Holman Fenwick’s turnover in 2010-11 rose 13 per cent to 112.5m, on the back of its continued international development and expansion. The firm launched offices in Brussels, Geneva and Perth – 50 per cent of the firm’s revenue now comes from outside London.