Interview with: Michael Damianos, Managing Partner
Michael Damianos, founder and managing partner of Michael Damianos & Co LLC, explains how the firm is adapting to clients’ changing needs.
What do you see as the main points that differentiate Michael Damianos & Co LLC from your competitors?
We are an internationally minded law firm and the majority of the work that we do is international, being instructed by international law firms, financial institutions or other international organisations that do work in or via Cyprus.
The firm provides practical, commercial and non-academic advice which tends to be to the point. As the firm’s founder and managing partner is an English qualified solicitor and has spent time in the City of London with two international law firms, the firm has been set up and grown to satisfy the needs of instructing counsel, such as to be responsive and to make instructing counsel feel that the firm is their own office presence in Cyprus (just like having an office in another part of the world).
Which practices do you see growing in the next 12 months? What are the drivers behind that?
We see growth in demand mainly in international acquisitions work in the technology and life science sectors. Having said that, we also see a lot of demand in foreign corporations setting up offices or even moving their headquarters in Cyprus, which is something that provides growth for real estate, commercial, employment law and immigration work.
What’s the main change you’ve made in the firm that will benefit clients?
As the firm has grown over the years, it has been spilt into different departments such as transactional department (dealing mostly in corporate and finance work), the advisory department (dealing with all types of commercial and related business work), the corporate services and the immigration departments.
This is very beneficial and important for clients who different needs and need to be serviced via different departments and not merely by specific lawyers on all matters.
Is technology changing the way you interact with your clients, and the services you can provide them?
Technology has, especially during recent years, facilitated to a great extent our way of interacting with our clients. Meetings are now taking place online through various channels and this provides value to the client, in terms of not losing time in going back and forth in physical meetings unless this is essential.
Can you give us a practical example of how you have helped a client to add value to their business?
We have recently acted for a prop-tech start-up company. The start-up was founded and is being managed by an experienced team of real estate and technology professionals, but with no experience in corporate and contract related matters or matters concerning start-up business capabilities. We assisted with the legal and commercial aspects of pulling of investors in the said start-up, which resulted in having a successful Cypriot prop-tech start-up with multiple investors (which is uncommon).
Are clients looking for stability and strategic direction from their law firms – where do you see the firm in three years’ time?
We see the firm expanding in the services it provides, in the regions that it is active in, and growing in numbers of employees, clients and of course revenue and profits.