A global platform: Joining forces with Linklaters
Ten years ago, on 1 May 2012, Allens and Linklaters formed a global alliance to enhance and expand our offering to our people and clients. Since then, more than 200 people have enjoyed global career opportunities through the alliance and we have worked together on thousands of matters spanning the world. Here is where it all began...
By 2010, as Australia recovered from the GFC, international firms seeking expansion saw Australia as an attractive market, especially given its close proximity to major project development and financing work in Asia. The large United Kingdom and United States firms showed the greatest interest.
Allens had dragged its heels with the domestic mergers of the 1980s and did not want to be late to this development. A 'best friends' relationship had been in place with United Kingdom firm Slaughter and May for several years. However, unlike their 'magic circle' counterparts, Slaughter and May did not wish to pursue international expansion. Allens needed to consider new options, and Linklaters was top of the list.
The idea of an alliance between Allens Arthur Robinson and Linklaters was first discussed in mid-2011. Michael Rose and Simon Davies, the managing partners of the two firms, had been attending an international legal conference in California and began discussing the growing interest in the Australian market. Rose was keen to continue the conversation and took a detour via London on the way home. Joined by Allens Arthur Robinson chairman Ewen Crouch, they met with Davies and some of his fellow Linklaters partners. The firms had worked together and shared similar clients, cultures and values.
'We had been scratching our heads for some time about covering Australia for clients. When we started looking at it, the complementary nature of the practices became evident.'
- Linklaters Senior Partner, Robert Elliott
Over the year conversations continued; neither firm was eager to merge, but both could see benefits in working together. In particular, each firm was keen to strengthen its involvement in the growing energy, resources and infrastructure work in Asia. In 2012 Allens Arthur Robinson and Linklaters announced an integrated alliance. The firm also decided to adopt the colloquial name by which it had long been known – Allens.
The firms maintain their financial independence while sharing best-practice approaches to solve client problems. The alliance gives Allens' clients access to a global network of forty offices in twenty-eight locations and there is a consistent flow of talent between the two firms, at both senior and junior levels.
'The alliance remains a unique structure in the Australian legal market. Our clients and our people continue to benefit from the expertise, reach and opportunities the alliance brings.'
- Allens Managing Partner, Richard Spurio