Having already announced a mammoth combination with Chinese firm Dacheng under a Swiss verein structure this year, Dentons bolstered both its US and CEE capabilities last month by combining with Atlanta-based McKenna Long & Aldridge and hiring a 50-strong team from the Budapest office of White & Case.
Dentons had been scoping the market for a US combination for some time, and previously attempted to tie-up with McKenna Long in 2013 – though that was unsuccessful after partners at both firms rejected the move. This time, Dentons chief executive Elliott Portnoy said events ran more smoothly than had been widely reported. ‘The conversation moved with substantial speed; in 2013 we weren’t able to bring it to a final closure. It’s common for them to begin and unfold over a number of years but fade before a deal can be done. You need a high level of alignment around strategy.’