WFW eyes Greek dominance with team hire

Watson Farley & Williams (WFW) has raided Athens firm IKRP Rokas & Partners for an energy-focused corporate team as it accelerates its plan to become the largest UK firm in Greece.

The move for UK dual-qualified corporate partner Virginia Murray is a rare lateral hire for the UK firm, which is also taking corporate assistants Maira Galani, who also specialises in energy, and Georgia-Maria Marcopoulou.

Murray said: “Combining our team’s experience with WFW’s international practice will create one of the leading energy firms in the Greek market at a time when major expansion in the sector is anticipated.”

Murray has acted for wind farm developers including the Rokas Group, Ktistor ATE, EDF Energies Nouvelles and the Englefield Renewable Energy Fund, as well as on the financing of renewable energy projects for banks, including BNP Paribas and Hypo-Vereinsbank.

Piraeus head George Paleokrassas said WFW will continue to grow its Greek corporate team. The hires are part of a wider strategy to expand the firm’s Hellenic practice away from its traditional focus on shipping.

The firm’s Greek offering now numbers three partners and nine assistants. It is intending to close the gap on Norton Rose, the largest UK firm in Greece with 33 lawyers, including four partners.

WFW’s Greek law practice was launched last September with the hire of partner Efstratios Paschalidis from Vgenopoulos & Partners (The Lawyer, 25 September 2006).