02 May 2022

Norton Rose Fulbright builds in Germany with five-strong real estate team from Simmons & Simmons

Partner Dr Oliver Beyer joins in Munich with three associates as counsel Dr Barbara Heinrich moves over in Frankfurt

Dr Oliver Beyer Image courtesy of Norton Rose Fulbright

Germany’s busy market for lateral hires has seen Norton Rose Fulbright (NRF) strengthen its real estate offering with the addition of a team from UK rival Simmons & Simmons. 

The team is led by real estate transactions specialist Dr Oliver Beyer, who has joined NRF in Munich alongside senior associate Leonie-Isabelle Raymann von Loefen and associates Isabella Schmidt and Michael Böger. 

Meantime counsel Dr Barabra Heinrich, who primarily advises on complex real estate transactions, has moved over in Frankfurt. 

Beyer advises clients including international investment and real estate companies as well as private equity investors and asset managers on domestic and cross-border M&A, private equity and finance transactions in the real estate sector. He joined Simmons & Simmons in 2013 to launch its Munich base, prior to which he was co-head of the Munich office at audit and tax accountancy firm RBS RöverBrönnerSusat and an associate at Paul Hastings and McDermott Will & Emery.  

The team’s arrival means NRF now has 13 lawyers in its real estate practice in Munich led by Germany head of real estate, Dr Maren Stölting, who like Beyer is a transactions specialist. It also replenishes the firm’s real estate bench in the country following the loss of partner Dr Hendrik Theismann and counsel Michael Mehler last summer in Frankfurt to German consultancy Baker Tilly.  

Stölting said: “We are already perceived as one of the most active consulting units in the real estate sector. With Oliver and his team, we can once again strengthen our nationwide practice for complex real estate transactions and real estate financing.”

NRF’s real estate lawyers in Germany act for clients on matters including urban regeneration projects, direct and indirect investment transactions, real estate financing, equity investment structuring, portfolio deals, corporate occupier matters, dispute resolution and development projects.

Beyer highlighted the real estate team’s growth in Germany and internationally in recent years, adding that its breadth of domestic and international experience was “highly attractive.”

“We look forward to being part of this expansion as a team and offering our clients a strong global international platform, not only in the real estate sector,” he said. 

In February NRF also hired real estate partner Janet Derbawka in Vancouver from Canadian firm McMillan, shortly after the firm added a trio of real estate-focused associates in the city. 

Simmons & Simmons commented: “We can confirm that Oliver Beyer has decided to retire from the partnership. Simmons Germany has built over the last years a sizeable real estate practice covering all relevant aspects from project development, to transactions and real estate finance. To cover the growing demands of our clients, we have added a counsel and a further associate to our Frankfurt real estate team.”

Simmons' real estate team is led in Germany by Frankfurt-based partner Boris Strauch, who joined last year from Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner. 

The arrival of Beyer and his team at NRF follows US law firm K&L Gates adding a nine-lawyer team to its real estate practice in Munich and Frankfurt from Eversheds Sutherland last July, with the team led by Munich partners Philipp Turnwald and Dr Nicolas Mähner. 

Another UK law firm looking to build its presence in Frankfurt and Munich recently was Addleshaw Goddard, which in March added a crop of partners from Advant Beiten, Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom and Gowling WLG to launch an office in each city

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