Offshore law firm Walkers announced that in response to client demand it will enter once again the corporate and fiduciary services business with the launch of Walkers Professional Services in mid-June.
Walkers exited the lucrative business line when it sold Walkers Management Services to Intertrust in 2012. At the time Walkers Management Services was headquartered in Cayman, employed more than 100 people in six countries and generated annual sales in excess of $50 million.
Tim Buckley, a partner in Walkers’ Cayman office, who has taken the lead in developing Walkers Professional Services said, “Many of our clients have told us unequivocally that they want Walkers to provide certain corporate and structured finance services and that is the genesis of this new business.
“Our aim is to be 100 percent responsive to client demand and tailor our services accordingly.”
Walkers Professional Services’ core focus will be on providing registered office, corporate and company secretarial services. The business will also provide fiduciary services to structured and asset finance vehicles to service the needs of its clients.
“We have made a conscious decision to focus on those areas which are complementary to our legal services offering. We have made a significant investment in technology and resources and we believe that Walkers Professional Services will set a new benchmark in the quality of these types of services,” Mr. Buckley said.
The 2012 decision to exit the corporate services business was the result of a strategic review, the law firm said at the time. However, it effectively reduced revenue for the firm and its partners. In the wake of the sale of Walkers Management Services to Intertrust, seven Walkers partners and three associates joined rival firm Maples and Calder.
In an expansion of its international network Walkers also plans the opening of an office in Bermuda by the end of this year, making it the first major international offshore firm to enter the Bermuda market.
Walkers intends to provide a full service operation in Bermuda, including the practice areas litigation, insolvency, corporate, investment funds, finance, insurance and trusts.
John Rogers, Walkers’ Singapore office managing partner said, “Our clients have long told us that they would value the expansion of Walkers’ service offering to include Bermuda legal advice. As with our other global offices, we intend to become a major force in the legal services industry in Bermuda and to grow and develop talent in that jurisdiction.”
Ingrid Pierce, Walkers’ Global Managing Partner added, “2015 has been an exceptionally strong year for Walkers and these decisions are aligned with our ongoing strategy of targeted expansion. Starting new and different businesses is an exciting place to be and we are committed to long term investment in these projects.”
Walkers will provide multijurisdictional legal services to clients who require legal advice on any combination of Bermuda, Cayman Islands, British Virgin Islands, Irish and Jersey law.
The launch of the Bermuda office before the end of the year is subject to obtaining the necessary licenses and approvals.