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Legal market overview
Following Dewey & LeBoeuf Studio Legale’s liquidation in 2012, most of the firm’s attorneys entered into an agreement with Vittorio Grimaldi, formerly of Grimaldi e Associati, who authorised the branding of the new name Grimaldi Studio Legale. Despite the rebranding, Grimaldi Studio Legale also then endured the departure of 35 lawyers after managing partner Bruno Gattai, a driver behind the relaunch, exited with eleven partners, including equity partners Luca Minoli, Nicola Brunetti, Gaetano Carrello and Stefano Catenacci, to launch Gattai, Minoli & Partners in January 2013; and antitrust expert Rino Caiazzo left to join CDP Studio Legale Associato.
Other changes included CBA Studio Legale e Tributario’s Claudio Guccione departing to found public utilities and infrastructure boutique, P&I – Studio Legale Guccione E Associati; Gianni, Origoni, Grippo, Cappelli & Partners hiring banking and finance partner Luigi Chessa, as well as finance partners Giuseppe Schiavello and Stefano Agnoli, from CDP Studio Legale Associato; and corporate and equity capital markets partner Michael Bosco joining DLA Piper LLP from Shearman & Sterling LLP.
In addition, Chiomenti Studio Legale’s former administrative team head, Luca Perfetti, joined Villata Degli Esposti e Associati; Bonelli Erede Pappalardo’s administrative department head Fabio Cintioli departed to establish his own boutique, Cintioli & Associati; public law firm Satta & Associati changed its name to Satta Romano & Associati; and Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer’s Milan-based Nicola Barra Caracciolo and Mario Ortu established a corporate practice at Orsingher Ortu – Avvocati Associati, formerly known as Orsingher Avvocati Associati.
The weakening economy has translated into further reductions in big-ticket M&A, merger clearances, leveraged financings, and IPOs, as well as a stagnant real estate sector, but new entrants continue to brave the Italian legal landscape. For example, global law firm K&L Gates reached agreement to merge with Italian firm Marini Salsi Picciau Studio Legale; and Francesco Sanna left DLA Piper LLP to head K&L Gates’ real estate practice.
Italian firms also continue to venture overseas. Legance Studio Legale Associato plans to open an office in London in early 2013, having hired Marco Gubitosi, a corporate and private equity specialist, from Gianni, Origoni, Grippo, Cappelli & Partners.