Morning Briefing: Dentons expands yet again

Dentons announces yet another… Slater & Gordon value slumps on car crash announcement... New arbitration heads for Linklaters… HSF appoints new partner in HK… RPC named law firm of the year at British Legal Awards…

Dentons expands yet again
The ever-growing global law firm Dentons has added another piece to its international jigsaw. Thirty-four lawyers including 9 partners will join the firm from Luxembourg’s OPF Partners in January 2016. OPF is a leading law firm focusing on finance, corporate, investment funds, tax, real estate and dispute resolution. The deal means that Dentons will expand its capabilities in the world’s major financial centres including Sydney, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Singapore, Shenzhen, London and New York.

Slater & Gordon value slumps on car crash announcement
The UK government’s finance minister has delivered news which shook investors in Slater & Gordon. The Aussie law firm’s shares slumped Thursday after Chancellor George Osbourne announced in his Autumn Statement to London’s House of Commons that lawsuits for car accidents would be limited. In a move designed to limit rises in car insurance Mr Osbourne said that general damages for injuries sustained in motor accidents would be limited and would be more likely to be covered in the small claims court.
The Australian reports that the move will hit Slater’s profitable personal injury business in the UK and its value on the Australian stock market slumped 51 per cent on Thursday with share values falling below their 2007 IPO price for the first time. It says that Slater & Gordon’s market value has fallen from $1.1 billion on November 18 to $381 million yesterday. 

New arbitration heads for Linklaters
Two co-heads of international arbitration have been named at Linklaters. London-based Matthew Weiniger and Paris-based Pierre Duprey will lead the team across the firm’s offices and succeed Françoise Lefèvre and Matthieu de Boisséson.
HSF appoints new partner in HK
William Ku has been appointed as debt capital markets partner in the Hong Kong office of Herbert Smith Freehills. He joins the firm from King & Wood Mallesons where he had spent 12 years having joined legacy firm Mallesons Stephen Jacques as an associate. He is qualified to practice law in Hong Kong, London and New South Wales.
RPC named law firm of the year at British Legal Awards
International firm RPC has been named Law Firm of the Year at the British Legal Awards.  The firm is London-based but has offices in Hong Kong and Singapore and won for its financial results, innovation and the way it looks after its staff. Other winners included David Morley, senior partner of Allen & Overy, who won senior/managing partner of the year.

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