European law firm Fieldfisher is expanding its European presence with a new office opening in the Austrian capital Vienna on 1 June 2023.
The move is part of the firm's European growth strategy, designed to give Fieldfisher greater multi-jurisdictional capacity and capability in Europe.
The Vienna office will initially comprise four partners, one director and four lawyers, with a total headcount of 17 people. It will be located in the heart of the Austrian capital, opposite the city's iconic St Stephen's Cathedral.
The office will be led by Dr Thomas Ruhm LLM, formerly a partner at SCWP Schindhelm, a leading corporate law firm in Austria and the Central & Eastern Europe (CEE) region. He will be joined by Dr Alice Meissner, who is integrating her boutique law firm Meissner & Passin into the Fieldfisher offering, Mag. Philipp Reinisch LLM, LLM another former SCWP Partner, and Hon Prof Dr Leonhard Reis.
Together, they form a formidable partner team with longstanding experience advising Austrian and international clients on local, cross-border and multi-jurisdictional matters.
The office will initially focus on corporate, dispute resolution, data protection and information, employment, real estate, IP and regulatory areas of law. The team will capitalise on their combined deep understanding and experience of financial services, life sciences, energy and natural resources, and technology in full alignment with Fieldfisher's core areas of sector focus.
Fieldfisher's Managing Partner, Robert Shooter said:
"One of the central planks of our 2022-2025 strategy is to become Europe's leading law firm by opening new offices in key European markets. We see Vienna as a strong commercial centre in Europe and a gateway to Central & Eastern Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) regions.
"Vienna is also an important international arbitration hub. Fieldfisher already has a high-quality arbitration offering in Europe's biggest arbitration centres – London and Paris – with further arbitration specialists in Belgium, Germany, Italy and Spain and establishing a presence in Vienna will support our credibility to win international arbitration work from both local and international clients. It will also help us capitalise on other international opportunities available in the local market, particularly US and Chinese inbound work.”
"For these reasons, we are excited about our move into Austria and look forward to working closely with our new team on the ground."
"We are thrilled to be opening the newest office of one of Europe's leading law firms. I am proud to be launching Fieldfisher Austria with such a strong team, drawn from some of Austria's most respected law firms and wider legal and business backgrounds.
"As a European law firm with wider international capabilities, including offices in China and the US, Fieldfisher's proposition is unique in Austria and the CEE region. We share Robert's enthusiasm for the potential of Fieldfisher Austria and we look forward to serving clients with enhanced reach and capabilities offered by our colleagues across Fieldfisher's international network.
"We are excited to render services based on legal excellence and commercial understanding, and on a sophisticated network and new technology basis in Austria and the CEE region."
Moving to Austria is the continuation of Fieldfisher's meteoric growth in Europe. It follows the firm's recent Berlin office launch through the establishment of its mass litigation business unit, Fieldfisher X in 2022, and an opening in Dublin through a merger with the local law firm McDowell Purcell in 2019. The Vienna office will bring the firm's international network to 26 offices in 12 countries.
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