05 June 2019

HSF to exit Berlin

Berlin exit as Herbert Smith Freehills refocuses on Frankfurt and Düsseldorf, leaving even less international coverage in the city.


Herbert Smith Freehills is reducing its operation in Germany with the closure of its Berlin office closure.


HSF is to close the 10-lawyer office Berlin office by the end of the year, leaving the Frankfurt and Düsseldorf to serve the German market. The Berlin office is currently led by corporate partners Dirk Hamann and Ralf Thaeter, and was opened in 2013. All associates, trainees and business services staff in Berlin have been given the option to transfer to the firm’s other German offices. In a statement, HSF managing partner Nico Abel said “After careful consideration and consultation, we have decided to close our office in Berlin. So that we are best placed to meet current and future challenges, and make the most of opportunities, we must ensure we have the right capability in the right locations. We want to concentrate our future growth in Frankfurt and Düsseldorf, as these are the markets with the greatest opportunities for the firm and our clients.”

Berlin exits

With most international firms already focused on Munich and Frankfurt and the HSF, Berlin’s main international presence is Dentons and Greenberg Traurig. Mr Abel explained, “Germany continues to be a key strategic market for the firm, and we remain strongly committed to growing our leading practice in the region.” He added, “We are confident that we can continue to provide the same quality and breadth of service to our clients in Berlin.”

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