After a full year of advanced negotiations, Eversheds has merged with its German partner Heisse Kursawe Eversheds, allowing the duo to financially integrate and make investments in Munich, Berlin and Hamburg.
Following the merger, Eversheds will trade in Germany as Eversheds Deutschland and primarily practice in areas including corporate M&A, real estate and human resources. Around 30% of clients are currently shared between the firms, mainly US multinationals with operations in Germany.
Negotiations were led by Lee Ranson, managing partner of Eversheds LLP, and Keith Froud, head Eversheds’ UK company commercial team. The union with the 28-partner firm was also overseen by partner Ian Gray, who was appointed to the role of international managing partner in early May and is tasked with developing German operations and other non-UK relationships.
Eversheds has been actively looking to boost its German piece for some time and last April the firm confirmed it was in talks over a full merger with Heisse Kursawe and at the same time opened a third German office in Berlin.
Gray told Legal Business: ‘Heisse Kursawe has been part of Eversheds international network for 10 years – the plan was always to develop and financially integrate. The discussions developed over a number of years but became serious last year.
‘We are looking to grow aggressively in Germany and that requires investment. We we want to do that through the larger Eversheds LLP structure so we moved them into new offices in Munich and they’re being financially integrated so we can drive investment in the Munich, Berlin and Hamburg offices. It’s part of a wider strategy to develop bigger operations in key places around the world. We’re also focused on further developing in Paris, Hong Kong and Dubai.’
Managing partner of Heisse Kursawe Eversheds, which was founded in 1974, Matthias Heisse said: ‘Being a part of Eversheds International for so long has given us a very long courtship in which we have got to know each other very well. We share a common strategy with Eversheds to continuously strengthen our position in our domestic market whilst expanding our reach internationally, both across Western Europe and globally. We have thought long and hard about agreeing to this marriage. Ultimately the decision has been made by reference to what is best for our clients as well as for us.
‘Through merging with Eversheds we believe we can improve and extend our services for both our German and our many international clients for whom our partners will remain the trusted and highly committed advisers they have known for many years. We are very excited about the future as part of Eversheds LLP.’
Eversheds’ ongoing expansion strategy saw the firm announce the creation of two new alliance networks covering Asia Pacific and Latin America, initiatives intended to further formalise relationships with local firms, but remain non-exclusive.
For in-depth analysis of Eversheds see: The ideal law firm for 2013? Eversheds hunts for its breakthrough