News: (3.10.2011) Brodies opens Brussels office

3 October 2011 Brodies LLP today became the only Scottish legal firm with an office in Brussels. The firm has established a presence in the heart of Europe to enhance its service to Scottish clients requiring advice on EU regulation, competition and public law.  

As the firm with the biggest legal resource in Scotland, with offices in Edinburgh, Glasgow and Aberdeen, Brodies serves clients across a broad spectrum of sectors impacted by EU regulation, including transport, financial services, energy, life sciences and food & drink as well as government at all levels.  

This new venture, led by Partners Mark Clough QC and Christine O'Neill, will support all of Brodies' client sector teams and provide expert advice on EU policy and legislative developments.  

Brodies' international expansion will also help clients to influence European policy, giving Scottish businesses a direct presence in Brussels and representation in cases involving the EU Commission and Council in the European Courts. Brodies advises clients regularly on issues such as EU competition law, including mergers, cartels and state aid.  

Mark Clough is one of the UK's leading experts in competition and merger control law, with more than 20 years' experience of practising across the UK and Europe. He is well known in Brussels, having lived there for a decade and represented clients on a regular basis before the Commission and European Courts.  

Christine O'Neill is a recognised expert on public law and regulation, advising on the powers of the Scottish and UK Parliaments and on the work of Scottish, UK and EU institutions. She is regularly involved in ground-breaking court cases - both for and against government and the commercial sector - in challenging and defending legislation and government decision-making.  

Commenting on the opening of the new office, Bill Drummond, Managing Partner of Brodies LLP, said:  "Our decision to establish an office in Brussels reflects our commitment to responding to the needs of our Scottish client base and the recognition that policy direction means that the work of the European Commission will have an ever more direct impact on both corporate and public sector activity in Scotland.  

By giving Scottish businesses access to Scottish lawyers directly involved in, and attuned to, the work of the EU institutions we hope to help our clients contribute to the future growth and prosperity of the Scottish economy. We also believe it is important to have an operational base in central Brussels where clients can both meet with our lawyers and access all Brodies know-how on the same basis as in our three main Scottish offices.  

We are focused on delivering the highest possible standard of service to our Scottish clients and constantly challenging ourselves to enhance it further by developing new solutions to the challenges of today and tomorrow. From food & drink to transport, fisheries and renewables, we are confident that our Brussels office will make us the natural choice for EU legal advice for Scottish businesses and institutions operating in any sector."  

Dr Lesley Sawers, Chief Executive of the Scottish Council for Development and Industry (SCDI), Scotland's leading economic development organisation, said:  "We are delighted that one of Scotland's best-respected legal firms is to expand its reach into the heart of Europe, our biggest export region.  

Brodies' investment in Brussels will support the professional network that will enable our businesses to realise Scotland's export potential, as well as enhancing our global reputation for excellence in legal services. We look forward to continuing to work with Brodies both in Scotland and within their expanding international network to deliver on our shared ambitions of sustainable growth."

Link to Press Release