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Kiss and tellWith all these mergers, alliances, best friends, good mates and met-them-once arrangements City firms are forming, The Diary has had trouble of late working out exactly what all these cross-border deals actually mean.Is it a takeover, an acquisition, a bloody conquest, a con trick of international proportions, a financial union grounded on hard logic or just the result of two managing partners sharing a few too many schnapps one night in Frankfurt?Thankfully, a neat definition has now been provided by one partner from Herbert Smith’s new Aryan buddies Gleiss Lutz Hootz Hirsch, who summed up the relationship.“Well, we are not a merger to start with, unlike the others,” he confided.The Diary asked him to expand on this, detecting some Teutonic passion quietly bubbling away inside him.“It is like this, we have merely kissed the hand of Herbert Smith. The others, such as Puender and Boesebecks, have kissed the knees of the English firms,” he said with a proud look on his face. Good to know it is not all business.

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