Although Hogan Lovells has an active and successful African practice with over 40 lawyers around the world focusing on Africa, a physical presence in the continent has become increasingly important for law firms with a global footprint.
The majority of Hogan Lovells’ top 200 clients have operations on the continent and South Africa is still regarded as the gateway into sub-Saharan Africa, particularly as many companies base their regional headquarters in Johannesburg.
“Both firms have proven track records, and this is a merger of expertise and knowledge to ensure that we continue to offer our clients the very best legal services. We have found that we share the same values and approach as Hogan Lovells – providing creative legal and business solutions for our clients with the highest professional standards. That won't change,” said Lavery Modise, Chairman of Routledge Modise.
The combined firm’s Johannesburg office will comprise of 120 lawyers, including 41 partners, and will focus on corporate, commercial, banking and finance, litigation, mining, real estate, employment work as well as projects and infrastructure, and energy.
Commenting on the news David Harris, global co-CEO of Hogan Lovells said, “Africa is an extremely important market for our clients and to us as a firm. A significant number of our clients have an interest or a presence on the continent and with Africa’s substantial natural resources, expanding economies and growing consumer base, this interest will continue to increase rapidly.”
Modise believes that the two firms are natural partners, commenting that, “Routledge Modise and Hogan Lovells are both recognised for having good quality partners, a cohesive partnership ethos, ambition, and an international outlook, and we look forward to our future together as one firm worldwide.”
Routledge Modise will rebrand and re-launch as Hogan Lovells from early 2014.