Pinsent Masons has finally announced plans to launch in Dublin in what will be the firm’s fourth international office opening in the last 18 months.
Pinsents will open in the Irish capital through a Greenfield site with three partners, each from different local firms, focusing on financial services and technology.
Outsourcing partner Andreas Carney joins from Matheson, corporate partner Dennis Agnew from Bryne Wallace and funds partner Gayle Bowen joining from Walkers.
Whether and which law firms will launch in Dublin has been a closely watched subject since the UK-EU referendum last year. Pinsents’ senior partner Richard Foley, however, told Legal Business that the decision was made before Britain decided to leave the EU.
‘We had made this strategic decision to look at the Dublin market before 23 June last year. It wasn’t a Brexit thing. For us, we felt that given Dublin’s reputation as a key global hub in financial services, technology and pharmaceuticals it was an obvious place for us to look in’, he said.
‘When Brexit happened – we didn’t predict it, but it reaffirmed in our minds – that was a good decision’, Foley said.
‘Brexit isn’t irrelevant to it but it wasn’t designed as a Brexit response. The added benefit is that it will give us a great degree of resilience depending on how Brexit plays out,’ he added.
According to Foley, the firm’s more specialised offering is targeting both new and existing clients in the market. It is also hoping to gain market share from Dublin’s well-established independent players.
‘We are effectively targeting the funds work, we are targeting the major technology businesses, the major pharmaceutical businesses, across the other M&A work – that’s where we think the sweet spot is and that is the staple diet of the major independent Irish law firms’, Foley added.
Legal Business revealed last August that Pinsents was eyeing up a Dublin base, to complement its existing offering in Belfast and provide a full UK and Ireland presence for the firm.
In May, Pinsents launched a Madrid office with six partners, four of whom joined the firm from local Madrid firm Ramón y Cajal Abogados (RyC).
Pinsents also bolstered that office with a hire from top 30 global contractor OHL, Pinsents energy and infrastructure associate Sofia Parra, who was made up to partner in the move.
It has been a busy year for Pinsents, which has also opened offices in Düsseldorf and Johannesburg in addition to acquiring Munich firm Mayrhofer & Partner.
The firm recently bought specialist diversity and inclusion (D&I) business Brook Graham for an undisclosed sum, fresh from buying a 20% stake in New Law outsourcing business Yuzu.