DLA Piper is the latest global law firm to expand its presence in Latin America through a tie-up. The firm announced on October 28 that it has reached an agreement with Mexico City-based Gallastegui & Lozano to pool their resources starting January 1, 2015. The combined entity, DLA Piper Gallastegui & Lozano, will field more than 23 attorneys.
The global firm has maintained an office in Mexico since 2012. The announcement comes on the same day that Baker & McKenzie’s Mexico City office made public that it lured the team of Carlos Valencia, Miguel B. de Erice, Tatiana Escribano, Luis Álvarez, Javier Zenteno, Gabriel Salinas, and Karina Duyich from DLA Piper.
Seven of Gallastegui & Lozano’s partners will join DLA Piper’s network, while Eduardo Gallastegui, a founding partner of Gallastegui & Lozano, is expected to be named managing partner of the combined entity once the merger is complete. A business, M&A, legislative and governmental affairs, telecommunications, and antitrust lawyer, Gallastegui advises clients in a range of industries, including telecommunications and pharmaceuticals. Attorneys working with Gallastegui include: Gerardo Lozano (banking, finance, arbitration, and maritime law), Maria Eugenia Rios (M&A, corporate, real estate, and finance), Jorge Benejam (M&A, healthcare, corporate, and banking), Gabriela Alaña (real estate and finance), Marcelo Paramo (energy, oil and gas) and Cecilia Azar (arbitration and alternative dispute resolution).
Manuel Rajunov, managing partner of DLA Piper’s Mexico City office, explained why the region is an integral part of the firm’s global strategy.
“It is an important market for us as many of our clients have major operations in Mexico, while many others do significant business there,” Rajunov said. “Our presence in Mexico City also creates a number of opportunities for our clients in markets like Spain, the rest of Europe, other countries in Latin America, and the major financial markets in the U.S. and Asia, such as New York, Chicago, California, Houston, Dallas, and Miami, among others, by providing a sophisticated and complementary Mexico practice.”
Stuart Berkson, partner and chair of DLA Piper’s Latin America practice, added that “There is a significant amount of inbound and outbound work in Latin America and a presence in the region is critical for a global firm that aims to offer a full-service platform. The Americas, Canada, and other portions of Latin and South America are possible regions for expansion.”
DLA Piper currently has a presence in Caracas, Venezuela, as DLA Interjuris Abogados, and an agreement with Campos Mello Advogados concerning the establishment of a foreign consultancy in Brazil.