The recently published 12th edition of “Kanzleien in Deutschland – eine Auswahl deutscher Wirtschaftsanwälte” (“Law Firms in Germany – a Selection of German Commercial Attorneys”) underscores the comprehensive advising expertise of Graf von Westphalen as one of the few commercial law firms “that could hold its own at the top among service providers.” The prestigious reference book gives an overview of more than 500 selected law firms and attorneys with exceptional competency in business law.
The four-page profile on the law firm Graf von Westphalen draws attention to its outstanding staff of attorneys specializing in corporate and construction law, areas in which Graf von Westphalen “also enjoys a very good reputation that extends beyond Germany.” With international locations in Alicante, Brussels and Shanghai, the law firm “took the critical step early enough to be able to keep pace in the competition for international clients,” the book states.
After the carefully considered separation from the offices in Cologne and Freiburg in 2010, the law firm’s many years of active staffing policy is now paying off, states “Kanzleien in Deutschland.” Fittingly, the publication underscores the positive contributions of new attorneys at Graf von Westphalen, particularly in the area of corporate law/M&A, a strong pillar of the firm. New additions mentioned by name include Dr. Dominik Ziegenhahn (“exceptionally active in his work”), Robert Alan Heym (“a great find for the international business”) and Dr. Dunja Stadtmann.
In construction and real-estate law, the excellent reputation of the partners Dr. Robert Theissen, Dr. Alexander Freiherr von Aretin and Dr. Lorenz Czajka is especially emphasized as is the successful acquisition of additional partners from outside the firm who will provide added momentum to the expansion of this important area. Here, the Frankfurt real-estate attorney David Wende draws special mention: He and his team have set standards in real-estate transaction law.
“Stand-outs from the full-service providers” is the description the editors of the reference book gave to the bank and capital-market law practice of Graf von Westphalen. This area is headed by Dr. Frank Süß, “who has a good deal of international business and advises several well-known clients, including Commerzbank.” In this practice, special mention is made of Dr. Michael Nicolaus and Patrick Wolff, who were successful with a range of cases related to investor protection and class-action suits (Lehman certificates), once again emphasizing the litigation expertise of the law firm.
Mentioned in the area of labor law is the “excellent reputation” and “tremendous wealth of experience relating to compensation plans, employment contracts and collective bargaining agreements” held by Managing Partner Christof Kleinmann. Special mention is made of PPP experts Dr. Dietrich Drömann (public private partnerships, infrastructure financing), Dr. Klaus Landry and Dr. Lothar Harings, whose expertise in customs duty and foreign trade law was honored with the 2011 Legal Excellence Award and who also received the designation “exceptional” from the highly respected Juve handbook in 2010/2011.
The law firm’s positive development highlighted in “Kanzleien in Deutschland” is also reflected in the firm’s current approach to staffing. Graf von Westphalen has already hired 15 new people in the widest array of practices and areas of focus in this year alone. Especially important to mention here is the addition of two Chinese colleagues who will support the law firm’s in- and outbound business in China.
As one of the largest full-service commercial law firms in Germany with foreign offices in Brussels and Shanghai as well as a branch office in Alicante, Graf von Westphalen is very well prepared to continue on its path to success. At the same time, suggests the report, the law firm’s positive development is also due to the new managing partners’ commitment to streamlining structures and decision-making processes as well as to systematically adjust them to meet current needs within the firm.