Swisstoric changes afoot at Eversheds

Eversheds’ chief executive Bryan Hughes unveiled the firm’s new three-year plan, as well as its longer term 2020 Vision, to partners last week, and put integration among the firm’s international offices at the top of the agenda (see story).

Hughes has said that he wants to create a unified brand and standard of quality across Eversheds’ network of offices and is thinking of switching to a Swiss Verein structure to achieve this.

If the firm did change its structure it would become the latest in a list of firms to do so. Baker & McKenzie got the ball rolling on the Swiss Verein front, converting in 2004, and has since been followed by Norton Rose, Hogan Lovells, King & Wood Mallesons and SNR Denton. The principal advantage of a Swiss Verein – or any verein for that matter – is that it allows a firm to create a single organisation while allowing individual branches to maintain regulatory independence.

The Swiss version of the verein is popular because the country’s sophisticated banking structure makes it easy to transfer money around. Well, that and the fact that the country is so reliably neutral.

Or at least it was: the country severely tested its standing yesterday after a certain citizen dashed the hopes of British tennis fans at Wimbledon.