One of the most interesting upcoming events is the European Networks Summit, which will be held in London on the 11th and 12th of March.

The Summit will answer crucial questions for independent law firms in the age of globalization. It is not exaggerating to say that most transactions nowadays have a cross-border element. As clients are doing their business world-wide, they are in need of lawyers who will help them with their legal problems spanning across different jurisdictions.

It seems that more and more independent law firms are forming international networks. The co-operation within the network may be less or more formal. Some networks have a single brand name, while others have not. It is important for independent European law firms to differentiate themselves from other firms on the market and to convince the UK and US firms to provide them with referrals. Some firms are concerned about losing their independence when joining a network.

The speakers at the Summit will try to address these challenges, and provide answers on how to effectively brand law firms and manage their international relations.

Over the years we have developed an informal network of co-operating law firms in several European countries and in Singapore. Thanks to this, we are in the position to advise clients on their investments both in Poland and abroad. We are now in the process of tightening our relationship.

The lucrative business of advising on mergers and acquisitions (M&A) is not any longer reserved to big law firms. Small, independent law firms, many created by refugees from big firms (like Woźniak Legal), are getting a much larger share in M&A transactions. Since these boutique law firms are too small to grow organically, they create international alliances to advise their clients on global deals. One of the biggest selling-points of these boutique firms is round-the-clock access to senior executives in respected countries. Personal relationships and flexibility matter a lot in M&A advice and scale very little.

A number of law firms over the years have gone for a model of exclusive and non-exclusive alliance relationships. Both models are enthusiastically adopted and promoted all over the world and – we think – the trend will continue. This will be the subject of The Lawyer’s Inaugural European Networks Summit, to be held in London in March.

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