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WLG’s Poole changes retirement plans to take on international head role

As Wragge Lawrence Graham & Co continues its post-merger integration, stalwart Quentin Poole (pictured) has taken on a new role as the firm’s international head in a bid to strengthen its overseas offering.

With his senior partner position being phased out, Poole will now devote all of his time to Wragge’s international business with responsibility for strengthening the firm’s current international offering and best friend networks, as well as considering new opportunities. Poole was appointed by the firm’s board without a time limit on the role.

Speaking to Legal Business, Poole said: ‘Our international business has become such a crucial part of what we do. In the last five or six years it has increased from 10% to 30% of our business. If you want to keep pace with your clients, you’ve got to internationalise. We really felt that somebody needed to devote a lot of time and attention to our international strategy and how that plays out. Its development is a major focus of the firm.’

The plan to phase out the senior partner role was approved by legacy Wragge & Co before its 2013 merger with Lawrence Graham in an attempt to clarify responsibilities of the two full time senior and managing partners at the firm.

Chairman Andrew Witts and chief executive David Fennel will carry on their respective roles, and over the last 12 months have taken on most of the non-international senior partner responsibilities.

‘I had actually planned to stand down and retire on 30 April, so from my point of view it was very exciting to be offered this opportunity and from the firm’s point of view it works well because it very much matches my skillset and I think there would have been some sort of gap if I had just bailed out,’ Poole added.