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Legal market overview
In South Africa’s highly fluid legal market, lateral hires are commonplace. The market was further altered by a number of law firm changes, notably with Baker & McKenzie entering the South African market in 2012, taking over a team from the defunct Dewey & LeBoeuf (PTY) Ltd’s Johannesburg office. It followed this by acquiring Johannesburg litigation boutique Rudolph Bernstein & Associates. A number of mergers completed in early 2013: these included ENS (Edward Nathan Sonnenbergs) joining with Brink Cohen Le Roux, and Canadian firm Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP merging with leading mining and project finance firm Bell Dewar.
Increasing global interest in African markets has provided South African firms with an opportunity to expand their practices outside the jurisdiction, or to agree foreign associations. For example, Linklaters entered into an exclusive alliance with Webber Wentzel in February 2013.