Legal Business Blogs

Simmons & Simmons to shut Rome office as firm focuses on ‘doing it all out of Milan’

Simmons & Simmons is set to shut its nine-partner office in Rome following a ‘detailed review’ and focus on clients in Italy’s industrial heartland in the north of the country.

In a statement this morning (4 August) the firm said it has ‘decided to consolidate its offering’ in Italy with partners relocating to its Milan outpost where most of the firm’s clients are located. The statement added: ‘Ultimately, the location of our offices is determined by the key markets for clients in our sectors.’

Commenting on the decision, Simmons’ senior partner Colin Passmore said: ‘We’ve looked at our business in Italy and we’ve decided that we can just as well consolidate by doing it all out of Milan. Most but not all of our clients are based out of Milan and it’s just a business decision to consolidate what we’re doing.’

While retrenching in Europe, the firm enjoyed a solid financial performance for the 2014/15 year with revenues up 8% to £290m, while profits per equity partner soared by nearly £100,000 to hit a new high of £649,000, following a bout of static years. The closure also follows the firm’s recent vote on a new three-year business plan with a focus on strengthening referral relationships in the US, transforming its partner-client relationships and committing to a set of firm-wide values.

Other looming office closures in Europe includes Winston & Strawn’s Geneva office in September as the firm looks to service arbitration work from London and Paris, while Berwin Leighton Paisner scaled back its offering in Paris last autumn, leaving only a liason outpost following the departure of French head Antoine-Audoin Maggiar.