29 Apr 2022

Kennedys strengthens LatAm presence with associations in Bolivia and Ecuador

Combinations mean UK insurance specialist has six associate offices in the region on top of seven bases of its own

Cityscape of Bolivan city La Paz

La Paz, Bolivia Shutterstock

UK top 30 law firm Kennedys has formed new associate offices in Bolivia and Ecuador, strengthening its presence across Latin America. 

In Bolivia the firm has formed an association with López del Solar and in Ecuador with Tobar ZVS, meaning the insurance giant has six associations across the region as well as seven offices of its own across Latin America and the Caribbean.  

Alex Guillamont, who leads Kennedys’ 60-lawyer strong Latin American and Caribbean practice from the firm’s hub in Miami, said the associations were formed after it had worked successfully with both firms for several years and “built a solid relationship serving mutual clients”. 

López del Solar has 15 staff and counts many of the region’s insurance and reinsurance companies as clients, providing corporate law, risk management and claims handling services. Kennedys said the Bolivian firm is a strategic partner to many insurers’ claims departments.

The firm is led by insurance specialist Alfonso López del Solar, who in addition to his experience in advising insurance and reinsurance companies serves as Honorary Consul of Belgium.

López del Solar said Bolivia’s insurance market is growing and “we see real opportunities to work more closely with Kennedys to deliver services for clients both in Bolivia and across the region”. 

Tobar ZVS, meanwhile, has eight partners and 30 lawyers working across several corporate areas. Its insurance unit is led by partner Rene De Sola and the department has almost 20 years’ experience in the insurance sector offering a range of insurance services including following major disasters in Ecuador and other countries across the region. It also has experience in corporate services, such as M&A with insurance companies.

Bernardo Tobar, managing partner of Tobar ZVS said forming an association with Kennedys strengthened the firm’s insurance practice and its ability to service its international client base. 

“We are looking forward to combining our expertise with the Kennedys team to serve the many shared clients we have,” he added. 

Kennedys said its Miami office, opened back in 2010, has paved the way for its expansion across Latin America. The firm currently has bases of its own in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Mexico and Peru, as well as six associate offices in Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Panama, Puerto Rico and now Bolivia and Ecuador.

Kennedys is firmly in growth mode, opening six new offices over the past two years and announcing record global turnover of £264m last summer in the 12 months to the end of April, an 11% increase on the previous financial year. 

March saw the firm add a veteran commercial litigator from US firm White and Williams to open in Delaware, while in 2021 it set up shop in Leeds, Perth and Oman and the year before that in San Francisco – its first office on the US West Coast – and Israel after taking on the former partners of Israeli firm Zelichov Ben-Dan & Co

The firm has also moved into new office space in Hong Kong, Manchester and Madrid to meet the hybrid work preferences of its lawyers and clients, doubling the size of its Madrid office in the process.

Kennedys’ Bolivian association follows Dentons becoming the first global law firm to gain an office in the country when it combined with local law firm Guevara & Gutiérrez last March. The move followed Dentons' combination earlier that month with Ecuadorian firm Paz Horowitz Abogados and took its LatAm and Caribbean office count to more than 30 across 27 countries.  

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