After local management buy out, German independent and Arno Legal ink a partnership agreement
Moscow office of Noerr has been spun out in a move that the primary German independent is setting down to 'altered market situations'
Four Noerr local partners and two of its counsel team join forces as founding partners of Arno Legal which is being considered as management buyout deal.
The former chief of the Russia office, Björn Paulsen, will head up a new desk from Hamburg and Berlin and oversee collaboration with the new firm. The two firms have forged a cooperative association.
In the background of the crisis in Russia and Ukraine as well as the escalating sanctions against Russia by the US and EU, the move comes as no surprise.
Castrén & Snellman, a leading Nordic firm, is transferring its St Petersburg and Moscow offices to Capital Legal Services (CLS) by 2020. King & Spalding retired from Moscow in 2021.
The Noerr partner who leads the development of the company, Torsten Fett, stated that "a cooperative approach makes sense going forward" given the "altered market conditions".
A year-over-year increase of 7.6percent brought revenue to €271.6m for the Munich-headquartered company in April 2021. However, even though German revenue grew by 9.3percent, the CEE region saw a slight drop off, with roughly €19 million coming from offices there in 2019, down from €21 million.
Arno Legal promotes itself as a full-service business law firm with experience advising companies and individuals in multiple industries and within a variety of practice areas of Russian and international law.
One of Arno Legal's founding partners Stefan Weber, who previously served as Moscow office head for Noerr, remarked: "The new partners are all former Noerr Moscow staff, have extensive experience in international relocation projects in Russia as well as the CIS countries."
The firm's other founding partners include Weber (head of competition); Viktor Gerbutov (head of dispute settlement and co-head of IP), Vladislav Skvortsov (head of banking and finance) and Maxim Vladimirov (head of tax) - all former Noerr Associates - as well as Vladyslav Khayryuzov (head of data privacy, TMT and co-head of IP) and Olga Mokhonko (head of corporate and employment) There are eight other fee earners listed on the firm's website.
Moreover, Noerr continues to maintain an extensive network throughout CEE, with offices in Warsaw, Bucharest, Bratislava, Prague and Budapest.