Hogan Lovells has decided to shut down its Prague office this summer following what it calls a "review of the market."
David Harris, global co-CEO of the firm, stated: "We have taken the decision to close the Prague office following a review of the market and our investment priorities. The partners in Prague understand the decision and are considering the possibility of the office becoming an independent local firm with an informal referral relationship with Hogan Lovells. We are very grateful to all of our people in Prague for their hard work over the years."
In Prague, Miroslav Dubovsky, the firm's local Managing Partner, confirmed the news: "Hogan Lovells has operated in the Czech Republic since 1991 working for both domestic and international clients. Obviously, global and local markets and priorities have changed since then. We firmly believe that we have a good practice and that there are market opportunities that we can take advantage of, including working with Hogan Lovells in the future. We look forward to the new challenges."
While it is not yet clear what date the closure will finalize, the aim of the firm is to complete it over the course of this summer. At the moment, the office has 14 fee earners, including Partners Miroslav Dubovsky and Pavel Skopovy, and 14 support staff.
The announcement come less than a month after Norton Rose's decision to pull out of Prague, reported by CEE Legal Matters of April 24. Of the two Norton Rose Partners in the former Prague office, Corporate Partner Milana Chamberlain will return to the firm's London office while Czech Partner Pavel Kvicala and his team have joined Havel, Holasek & Partners.