Greenberg Traurig launches in Germany with Olswang team

Greenberg Traurig has become the latest US firm to break into Germany by taking on Olswang’s Berlin team. The office, to be launched in October, will be Greenberg Traurig’s fourth European base.

The entire office, over 50 lawyers and staff, will join Greenberg Traurig on 1 October. Of those, 14 lawyers will become shareholders, or partners, at the US firm.

The move follows Olswang’s June announcement that it was “decoupling” Berlin to focus on growth in Munich.

Greenberg Traurig is bucking a recent trend of US firms downsizing in Germany. Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe is shutting down in Berlin and Frankfurt, Sidley Austin closed Frankfurt last year and Shearman & Sterling pulled out of Düsseldorf and Munich in 2013.

The most recent launch was that of Morrison & Foerster, which opened in the German capital with the hire of Hogan Lovells’ entire Berlin team in 2013.

Greenberg Traurig says the move aligns “perfectly” with its technology and real estate offerings and is part of its wider plans to bulk up in Europe.