KWM-SJB tie-up gets cautious thumbs up as other merger moves fail to convince
SJ Berwin's merger with King & Wood Mallesons (KWM) has been met with guarded optimism by law firm partners, who are more cynical about other recent high-profile tie-ups. Legal Week's latest Big Question survey has found that nearly 50% of partners believe legacy SJ Berwin's merger with Asia-Pacific giant KWM, which went live last November, looks like a good deal, while a further 6% believe the tie-up will be game-changing. However, 44% of respondents have a 'negative' or 'very negative' view of the union. Nearly half (46%) of partners see the KWM combination as being on a par with other sizeable international mergers in recent years, namely Norton Rose's tie-up with Texas firm Fulbright & Jaworski, which went live last June, US firm Hogan & Hartson's merger with City firm Lovells in 2010 and the three-way union between SNR Denton, Salans and Canada's Fraser Milner Casgrain last March forming Dentons.
CMS-Dundas and Wragges-LG unions receive less positive feedback, as partners predict wave of law firm combinations is set to continue. Pui-Guan Man reports
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