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Watford’s finest: Dentons in talks with Matthew Arnold & Baldwin over third tie-up of 2015

After having already announced tie-ups with China’s Dacheng and US firm McKenna Long & Aldridge this year, Dentons is pushing on with its expansion plans by holding talks with Watford-headquartered firm Matthew Arnold & Baldwin (MAB).

Dentons, which is quickly emerging as the poster child for speedy globalisation, said in a statement that the firm is ‘constantly evaluating the market for opportunities’ and ‘we do not make any comment on such discussions until they are complete to protect the privacy of those involved and to ensure our clients are the first to be informed of any enhancement to our firm.’

If such talks were to progress to a union, Dentons would add around 80 lawyers to its headcount across offices in Watford, Milton Keynes and London and nearly £17m to its top line. The law firm has four top-tier recommendations in The Legal 500 for the south east including commercial litigation and media. MAB refused to comment.

It would further constitute Dentons’ third official union this year. In January it announced a combination with Chinese firm Dacheng, a deal which will attempt to establish a 6,600-lawyer giant operating under a Swiss verein structure, while in April Dentons moved to bolster its US capabilities with a combination with Atlanta-based McKenna Long & Aldridge.

Now ranging over 125 offices and 50 countries, Dentons is deploying a strategy that aims to become the ultimate one-stop-shop for clients. In June management figureheads, chief executive Elliott Portnoy and chair Joe Andrew, told Legal Business the firm’s vision could potentially see it become a 10,000-lawyer firm spanning 200 offices.