Morrison & Foerster today officially opened its 17th office, located in central Berlin at One Potsdamer Platz. It is the firm’s first office in Germany and third in Europe.
The Berlin team, comprised of approximately 30 German lawyers and a like number of staff, was formerly the Berlin office of Hogan Lovells.
Of the 8 new partners Jens-Uwe Hinder will lead tax (and real estate). He is also the co-managing partner of the office.
Morrison & Foerster opened its first European office in London more than 30 years ago, and has developed extensive corporate, litigation and capital markets experience in the UK, along with strong transactional capabilities. The firm has a significant presence in Brussels, providing regulatory support for global transactions. The Berlin addition complements those capabilities and will help fuel growth in Europe and globally.
Mazars has announced that eight of the partner team of the former RSM Tenon office in Edinburgh have joined the international accountancy firm.
The team comprises Margaret Laidlaw, Laura Clarkson, Brian Hay-Smith, Keith Marshall, Fiona Martin, John McLeod, tax partner Liz Ritchie and Kevin Windram, who together offer a full range of audit, accounting and outsourcing, tax and advisory services.
Liz Ritchie had been with RSM Tenon in Edinburgh for the last 16 years. Prior to this she trained with Scott & Paterson.
Mazars’ UK senior partner Phil Verity said: “We are keen to grow our presence in Scotland and the arrival of this team will undoubtedly give us a significant boost. A number of the key business sectors in Scotland reflect our strategic growth market, including financial services, where Mazars has a long history and highly-regarded expertise. There is also clearly an opportunity for growth in other areas where we have strong capabilities, in the owner-managed business sector and the private client market.”
This is the second such group to join Mazars and follows the recruitment of seven former RSM Tenon partners in the East Midlands. Phil Verity, Mazars UK senior partner, commented “It is very pleasing at Mazars , that we have developed a firm in the UK which is increasingly being seen as the firm of choice for many talented members of our profession and this should serve us well as we continue our drive for further growth.”
The Spanish press have reported this week that Ernst & Young is to reestablish an office in Gibraltar. The Firm has reportedly struck a deal with directors from Baker Tilly who will become part of the new EY office.
South African Law Firm, ENS, has announced that Andries Myburgh and a team of tax specialists from KPMG joined the ENS Tax practice with effect from 1 July 2013. Andries brings with him Kristel van Rensburg, Katherine Boel, Andre Vermeulen and Gerdus van Zyl.
Andries’ market leading expertise in corporate income tax and industry experience in the energy & natural resources industries (in particular mining), together with his extensive experience in the transaction advisory environment (across multiple industries) bolsters the firm’s strategic capability in these practice areas. Andries’ tax technical and industry experience will also be brought to bear in the firm’s leading tax dispute resolution practice at a time when tax dispute matters has significantly increased, in particular in the mining sector. Andries has more than 15 years’ experience in the tax advisory environment and is highly regarded for his expertise.
Kristel has more than 7 years of tax consulting experience with a focus on the taxation of mining companies. Kristel’s experience includes advising clients with regard to tax efficient acquisition, restructure and funding structures. In addition to Kristel’s tax consulting experience, she was employed at the South African Revenue Service and was part of the team developing the legislation and implementation of funding used in respect of acquisition transactions utilising group relief provisions in the Income Tax Act. As part of advising clients on acquisition, restructure and funding structures, Kristel has enhanced her insight and interest in developing and advising on new and existing employment share incentive schemes and Black Empowerment schemes.
New York based member firm, Grassi & Co. has announced that David C. Sobel, CPA, along with his staff of tax professionals, have joined the firm effective May 1, 2013. David’s practice specializes in providing high-level tax consulting, including M&A and transactional tax services, to companies within the Media, Entertainment, Information Services, Technology and Financial Services industries.
David and his team possess diversified training in corporate taxation matters including ASC 740 (Accounting for Income Taxes), strategic tax research and planning, mergers and acquisitions, and audit defense and tax advocacy. David also brings substantial expertise in state and local taxation matters including income/franchise sales and use, property and employment taxes to the firm.
“David and his experienced staff will enhance Grassi & Co.’s existing tax practice as well as expand the firm’s expertise in a variety of industries. Combining the knowledge and experience of David’s practice with the experience and client-centric service approach of Grassi & Co. allows us to continue to meet and exceed our clients’ needs in order to help them achieve their business objectives,” says Louis C. Grassi, President and CEO, Grassi & Co.
Prior to joining Grassi & Co., David managed a successful boutique tax practice supporting the overall corporate tax functions at both large and closely held corporations ranging from SEC registrants to private equity portfolio companies. With more than 27 years of corporate tax experience, David has also served as a senior tax advisor for several public companies and has worked at Big 4 firms where he provided clients with general practice and special acquisitions tax services.
David is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA).
David completed his undergraduate degree and earned a BBA in Accounting from Hofstra University and studied advanced taxation at PACE University.
Graham Aaronson and Joe Hage have formed a new litigation boutique named Hage Aaronson. Graham Aaronson QC is currently with Pump Court Tax Chambers but will join the new firm as a partner when he is allowed to do so by the Bar Council. Hage is also a barrister and has a reputation for advising on litigation issues for ultra HNWIs.
The Lawyer has reported that 3 former Dorsey & Whitney tax partners will be joining the tax litigation team….Michael Anderson, Simon Whitehead and Paul Farmer. Anderson joins from KPMG where he has been Head of Direct Tax Litigation for the past 6 months.
The firm’s website states that “The firm seeks to provide the best qualities of a law firm and the bar, combined into one practice”.
Choate today announced that all of the partners in the Private Client Practice at Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr LLP will move to Choate. It is anticipated that the partners will be accompanied by associates and other staff, and that WilmerHale’s entire Private Client Practice will move to Choate. The WilmerHale team that is joining Choate includes partners Jennifer C. Snyder, Nan Giner, Michael L. Fay, and Brian W. Monnich.
The WilmerHale Practice will move to Choate on or about December 1, 2012. They will join Choate’s wealth management team of over 50 people, which includes lawyers, investment professionals, tax preparers, trust and estate administrators and other client service staff.
“We have a long and deep relationship with WilmerHale, and are thrilled to add this outstanding team of top-notch wealth management professionals,” said William Gelnaw and John Nadas, co-managing partners at Choate. “Bringing together our two preeminent wealth management practices will benefit all of our clients, and will enable us to continue to grow materially this priority practice area at Choate.”
Choate’s Wealth Management Group works closely with Choate Investment Advisors, the firm’s registered investment advisor subsidiary, to provide clients with objective, integrated solutions to their wealth management needs. Choate’s seamless “one-stop” approach to wealth management provides clients with world-class, institutional quality investment management services that are fully integrated with their tax, trust and estate planning and administrative needs.
“The transition of our private client practice makes good business sense for our team and for Choate,” said Susan Murley, co-managing partner, WilmerHale. “As a stand-alone practice at WilmerHale, we are pleased to see our private client team joining a law firm that has an established, robust and industry-leading reputation in wealth management. We wish members of our private client practice well as they make this transition.”
Choate’s Wealth Management practice has been nationally recognized as one of the leading practices of its kind by US News & World Report. Choate Investment Advisors is regularly ranked as one of the top wealth advisory firms in the country. Recent rankings include: Barron’s 2012 Top 100 Independent Wealth Advisors, AdvisorOne 2012 Top Wealth Managers, and Forbes Magazine’s Top 50 Fee Only Registered Investment Advisors.
Global audit, tax and advisory firm Mazars announced today that 6 partners, two consultants and more than 60 staff members from Grant Thornton Cape Town will join Mazars effective 1 August 2012.
Mazars has more than 13,000 professionals in 69 countries, in addition to correspondents and joint ventures in a further 15 countries. As at 31 August 2011, Mazars’ Group turnover was €956.7 million. The move will increase Mazars’ staff nationally to more than 750 and result in a turnover in excess of R350 million.
The team joining Mazars is the original Grant Thornton team that merged with BDO Cape Town two years ago and practised under the Grant Thornton name. That merger has been unwound, and the original Grant Thornton practice will now merge with Mazars.
“We’re delighted to welcome such an exceptional group of professionals into the Mazars family, and are confident that our cultures, values and strategic visions will merge seamlessly,” says Hilton Saven, National Chairman of Mazars South Africa and Co-CEO of Mazars International. “Their business mirrors ours remarkably in many ways, and will strengthen our offering across the board.”
Saven says the merger has been enthusiastically welcomed at international level, and is seen as an important development in its strategy of combining both organic and external growth.
Neil Miller, Joint Managing Partner of Grant Thornton Cape Town, who will join Mazars as a Partner says that the partners and staff are excited at the prospect of working with the calibre of professionals that Mazars offers: “We are all firmly of the belief that it is in the interest of all stakeholders in our business and, most importantly the clients, that we work in a strategic direction that places people and values at its core to enable us to develop and grow our service offering.”
In addition to Miller, the partners joining Mazars are Danny Naidoo, Mike Teuchert, David Smith, Larry Auret and Melanie Odendaal. Retired partners David Wener and Deryck Woolley will also join as consultants. The new partners and staff will be integrated into Mazars’ Cape Town based office in Century City.