Clyde & Co continues Americas push with Mexico launch

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Clyde & Co is to merge with Mexican law firm Garza Tello & Asociados, as the insurance-focused law firm continues its Americas growth drive.

The merger gives Clydes four partners and 23 lawyers in Mexico City, focusing on insurance, marine and energy law.

In addition to strengthening Clydes’ Latin American presence, the tie-up, which is still pending regulatory approval, also bolsters Clydes’ disputes practice in the region, with the Mexican office to work alongside disputes teams in Miami, London, Madrid and New York.

Clydes senior partner Simon Konsta said: “Garza Tello is a firm we’ve worked with for many years. Its sector focus complements our own and having a presence on the ground in Mexico is important as the market continues to liberalise and provides new opportunities for both our local and international clients.”

The merged firm in Mexico, which includes a satellite presence in the Gulf of Mexico port city of Ciudad del Carmen, will be fully integrated into Clydes’ single global partnership.

Speaking to Legal Week, Garza Tello senior partner Enrique Garza said: “Our practices are very similar, our client base is quite similar too and having a presence globally is a fantastic opportunity for us”.

He said the two firms had a long history together and that: “We are totally in agreement with the philosophy of Clydes, the way they approach clients and the services they provide.”

Clydes has had a presence in the Latin America for more than 25 years. The firm now has 13 offices across the Americas in locations including Brazil, Venezuela, Canada and the US, with the latest addition taking its global office count to 48.

Lee Bacon, a London-based disputes partner who co-chairs Clydes’ Latin America strategy group, said: “We are not looking to plant our flag everywhere, we are client driven and we would only open somewhere where we had the best team.”

Bacon would not confirm which other jurisdictions in Latin America the firm is looking at, but said Chile and Colombia are the two largest regional markets where Clydes does not yet have a presence.

Clydes has also targeted North America for expansion in recent months, opening offices in Chicago and Washington DC earlier this year with the hire of 10 partners from US law firm Troutman Sanders.

Konsta said the firm’s expansion into Mexico should be seen in the light of the firm’s wider Americas strategy.

“We see this is as more than just a Latin American development,” he said. “The energy companies, the infrastructure companies and the insurance companies that are interested in Mexico are global and we hope to develop that supply chain around the globe.”