Dentons adds three partners in Europe with Clifford Chance and Bakers hires

Dentons has recruited three partners for its Amsterdam and Prague offices, including a double hire from Clifford Chance (CC).

Two new partners are joining in Amsterdam – David Griston and Kuif Klein Wassink – alongside Petr Zakoucky, who will join the firm’s Prague base.

Griston joins from CC, where he led the Amsterdam energy team. His focus is on M&A, specifically in the energy, natural resources and commodities sectors. Prior to joining the magic circle firm in 2007, he was a partner at CMS Cameron McKenna in Moscow.

Wassink, meanwhile, joins from Baker McKenzie, where he was a partner in the Amsterdam corporate group. He also previously worked at Andersen Legal and CMS Derks Star Busmann.

Dentons launched in the Netherlands this May this year via a merger with local firm Boekel, and the firm recently recruited a quartet of lawyers from Bakers to head up the launch of a local tax practice.

Separately, Dentons has launched an energy practice in the Czech Republic with the hire of Petr Zakoucky, who also joins from CC, where he was a counsel. While at the magic circle firm he led the regulatory practice in the Czech Republic, with a focus on the energy sector. Two CC associates, Michal Pelikan and Barbora Obracajova, will follow Zakoucky to Dentons next month.

Dentons this year cut partners in the US, with as many as 20 or more partners leaving after the firm failed to meet its 2016 budget. This followed the firm cutting 60 staff jobs in the US in March. The firm also cut nine roles, including two partners, three solicitors, one paralegal and three secretaries, in its Watford office in the same month.

In July, profit per equity partner (PEP) at Dentons’ UK, Middle East and Africa (UKMEA) limited liability partnership fell by 9%. The fall took PEP down to £481,000 from £530,000 for 2015-16.

However, the firm has continued to expand this year, and last month sealed a Scotland launch with a deal to merge with Maclay Murray & Spens.