DLA Piper Ireland managing partner David Carthy

DLA Piper has taken four partners from some of Ireland’s biggest law firms to staff its newly launched Dublin office.

The quartet, who specialize in a variety of practice areas, will work with DLA Piper Ireland manager David Carthy, who joined the firm last year ahead of the official Jan. 1 launch of the Dublin base.

Two of the new partners join from A&L Goodbody—commercial and technology partner Mark Rasdale and employment partner Ciara McLoughlin—alongside Matheson corporate partner Eanna Mellett, who formerly headed up the Irish firm’s London office.

The fourth partner is banking and capital markets specialist Conor Houlihan, who joins from Dillon Eustace, where he has been a partner since 2006 and was head of the banking and capital markets practice. 

Alongside the partner hires, DLA has also recruited three legal directors from Irish firms—corporate lawyers Micheal Mulvey and Edel O’Kelly from William Fry and finance lawyer Eileen Johnston from Arthur Cox.

DLA is prioritizing local hires in its Ireland strategy, with Carthy joining from William Fry when the firm announced its Dublin launch in May last year. Carthy says the firm will continue to hire local talent and that it is aiming to eventually expand the office to full-service capability.

“Driven by a fast-growing economy, the Irish legal market is rapidly evolving and has entered a new phase of internationalization,”Carthy said. “The Irish market is mature and sophisticated but clients are looking for firms that disrupt the status quo, work differently and embrace innovation.”

Pinsent Masons, Covington & Burling and Simmons & Simmons have also recently launched offices in Ireland, while others have turned up their focus on the country amid the ongoing questions over the implications of Brexit.

Allen & Overy admitted 76 lawyers to the Irish roll during 2018, taking its tally to 110, while firms including Latham & Watkins and Slaughter and May have also taken similar steps. Among international law firms, Eversheds Sutherland has the highest number of lawyers admitted to the Irish roll with 132.