DWF opens first Italian office with hire of 16-strong Milan team

DWF is opening its first office in Italy, with a 16-strong team in Milan led by four partners.

The office, which will open on 1 November, will initially consist of four partners and 12 lawyers.

The firm has hired three partners from local independent Pavia & Ansaldo: corporate finance partner Michele Cicchetti, who will serve as managing partner of DWF Italy; tax partner Tancredi Marino; and M&A partner Luca Cuomo.

The fourth partner, real estate lawyer Daniele Zanni, joins from Italian independent LS Lexjus Sinacta, where he was a partner. All 12 additional lawyers are joining from Pavia.

The team has particular expertise in corporate, finance, tax and litigation advice on matters arising from domestic and international M&A and private equity, and advises clients in sectors such as insurance, energy and real estate.

DWF chief executive Andrew Leaitherland said: “We have seen really positive results from our German and French practices in a relatively short amount of time, and we are confident that our new Milan office will strengthen our offering in continental Europe, particularly across the private equity, energy and financial services sectors, and allow us to continue the momentum we have built so far.”

DWF entered Germany in 2015 via a merger with local boutique BridgehouseLaw, and earlier this year it added a Berlin office, hiring a team from DLA Piper as that firm pulled out of the German capital.

The firm launched in France on 1 January, merging with four-partner firm Heenan Paris.

Cicchetti said: “DWF’s platform offers a really exciting opportunity for growth, and our areas of work and our client bases are truly complementary. Along with our closer UK and European neighbours in DWF’s German and French offices, we envisage working very closely with colleagues internationally, tapping into the expertise that’s offered across the whole DWF group.”

DWF has also been expanding outside of Europe of late. Earlier this month, the firm announced that it had signed an association with a six-partner Australian firm ahead of an anticipated full merger, while in June it launched in Singapore with the hire of a four-lawyer team that had left Eversheds Sutherland ahead of its tie-up with Singapore’s Harry Elias earlier this year.