One of the most daring mergers to date — the joinder of eight U.S., British and Continental law firms — just keeps on growing. ShawnCoulson is adding four more firms, has 19 offices and is in discussions to add firms from Montreal; Dublin, Ireland; Frankfurt, Germany; Milan, Italy; and Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

This insta-firm was born out of a discussion Washington, D.C., international lawyer William Shawn had with an Italian colleague when Mr. Shawn was chairing the network Eurolink. “Nearly two years ago, one of the Italian members discussed serious problems they were having with large firms entering the Italian market and competing with the large accounting firms,” says Mr. Shawn. “That prompted us into thinking about forming Eurolink into some kind of a firm.”

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