International law firm Bird & Bird today opens a representative office in downtown San Francisco, its first office in the USA.
The new office will foster closer relationships between Bird & Bird's international network and US based clients, providing them with non-US legal advice in the same time zone. It will also focus on building the firm's presence in the region and providing an ideal platform for working together with US partner firms.
Bird & Bird advises the world's most innovative companies on their international activities in Europe, Asia-Pacific and the Middle East including international expansion and investments outside the US, intellectual property, disputes, data privacy, VC, M&A, HR issues, complex restructuring and transformational projects and coordinated multi-jurisdictional services. The firm currently advises more than half of the top 100 companies in the Fortune 500 – many of which are US based.
Stefano Silvestri, Partner and Co-Head of Bird & Bird's International Corporate Group, previously based in Milan, and Nick Aries, IP Partner, previously based in London, have both relocated to San Francisco to lead the office.
They are joined by new Tech & Comms partner Kai Westerwelle, who brings a wealth of expertise having been the co-head of Taylor Wessing's US group since 2014, and one of the founding partners of its representative office in Silicon Valley. Kai was previously a partner in Taylor Wessing's Frankfurt office since 2003.
The team will be joined by a Senior Associate from the firm's Asia-Pacific offices in the coming months.
Senior partners Roger Bickerstaff (Tech & Comms) and Ian Hunter (Head of International HR Services) will split their time between their London base and the new San Francisco office over the next few years to support the development of the office.
David Kerr, CEO of Bird & Bird says: "The opening of our San Francisco office continues an exciting year of growth for Bird & Bird, following our cooperation agreement with top domestic Chinese firm AllBright and revenues increasing by 11%
Our firm vision, to be the number one law firm in the world for organisations being changed by technology or the digital world, is consistent with us having a presence in one of the most innovative, technology and IP-rich cities in the world.
US companies' business models face significant disruption from international regulation as they expand to or trade with Europe or the Asia-Pacific region, so our on the ground presence now allows us to be closer to our clients as they navigate these changes.
Technology will naturally play a big part in our San Francisco offering with our relationship and matter management tools aiding our client service delivery."
Nick Aries, Partner and Co-Head of Bird & Bird's San Francisco office says: "Stefano, Kai and I are looking forward to further immersing ourselves in the local community and being able to work much more closely with the companies driving innovation in the region."