22 July 2019

Post-Brexit action heats up in Dublin

As UK prepares for new Prime Minister this week, Scots firm Shepherd and Wedderburn announces new office while Pinsent Masons continues expansion.

By Dr David Cowan

Post-Brexit worries Shutterstock

Shepherd and Wedderburn has opened an office in Ireland to serve its clients in the EU post-Brexit. Meanwhile Pinsent Masons is continuing its expansion in its Dublin office with a life sciences and technology litigation hire

No permanent moves

Shepherd and Wedderburn says the office in Dublin’s business district will allow the firm’s lawyers to support clients with issues including European intellectual property and competition matters when the UK finally leaves the EU. The firm will also be able to enhance its support to existing clients in Ireland and those establishing a presence there. The firm’s Irish presence is led by Paul Carlyle and Joanna Boag-Thomson, partners in the firm’s media and technology team, and Gordon Downie, a specialist in UK and EU competition law and regulation. Shepherd and Wedderburn has international clients in more than 120 jurisdictions outside the UK, including a growing number in Ireland. The firm is headquartered in Edinburgh and also has offices in Glasgow, Aberdeen, London and Singapore. Andrew Blain, managing partner of Shepherd and Wedderburn, said “Our ongoing focus is on our clients and ensuring they continue to receive European legal advice of the very highest quality, regardless of the outcome of Brexit negotiations.” Mr Blain said this move means there “will be no disruption of ongoing projects or our ability to support clients on a wide variety of European matters in the future.” However, while some five partners from the firm will work from the Dublin office, none will be immediately be based in Dublin and the firm has “not moved anybody permanently” and there are no immediate plans to make new hires.

Continuing expansion

Pinsent Masons has boosted its pan European life sciences and technology sector capabilities with the appointment of Michael Finn as partner in its Dublin office. Mr Finn will be joining from Matheson, where he leads its IP disputes group and previously established its life sciences regulatory and litigation practice. The firms ays he is a valuable addition to the Dublin IP and data team, and will work alongside IP and data litigation specialist Ann Henry to enhance the firm's big pharma offering in Dublin. Gayle Bowen, head of Pinsent Masons' Dublin office, said “Michael is a recognised leading practitioner who brings sector knowledge and expertise that is unmatched in the Irish market. His diverse experience complements Pinsent Masons' international Advanced Manufacturing and Technology sector and is a valuable addition to our Dublin office.” His appointment continues the expansion of Pinsent Masons' Dublin office, and follows the firm's recent recruitment of corporate financial services partner Naoise Harnett.

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