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Moscow team hire: Goltsblat BLP take on real estate trio from Akin Gump

Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP) has bolstered its global real estate capability with the hire of a rated three partner team from Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld’s Moscow office.

The team, which is set to join Goltsblat BLP in mid-January 2014, includes the current head of Akin Gump’s real estate practice in Russia, Vladislav Sourkov, who will be joined by his colleagues Rustam Aliev and Dmitry Maltsev. Sourkov is described by The Legal 500 as ‘dedicated, experienced, and very driven on client service’.

The trio’s hire will mean that Goltsblat’s first-tier real estate and construction practice, led by Vitaly Mozharowski, is one of the largest in Russia, a statement from the firm said today (10 December). It coincides with BLP’s decision to build its market-leading real estate practice of around 360 lawyers worldwide, which spans offices including Berlin, Frankfurt, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Hong Kong, Beijing and London.

These hires follow the announcement in November that Karen Friebe, the former global co-chair of DLA Piper’s hospitality and leisure group, will join BLP from early next year.

Notable global deals pointed to by the 780-lawyer firm include Allianz’s €300m acquisition of the office complex ‘Skyper’ in Frankfurt and the joint venture between CBRE Global Investors and Teacher Retirement System, Texas, on the purchase of the Leine Centre in Hannover for €117m.

‘BLP is renowned internationally for its expertise in real estate and we are delighted that such a regarded team of legal experts will provide added weight to the highly successful GBLP’s real estate practice in Russia as well as to our global real estate capability,’ said James Knox (pictured), international real estate partner at the firm, who joined from Linklaters in 2010.

Moscow is one of the biggest real estate markets in Europe, third after London and Paris, with investment in the sector forecast to reach between $7-8bn this year.