London - DLA Piper Rudnick Gray Cary ("DLA Piper") was named Global Law Firm of the Year at The Lawyer Awards 2006, held at Grosvenor House in London last night (27 June). The award was presented to Nigel Knowles, Joint CEO, in recognition of DLA Piper's efforts to integrate the business following its three-way transatlantic merger in 2005, expand across Europe and Asia and gain a foothold in new markets such as the Middle East and Africa.
The judges, who included former Lord Chief Justice and Blackstone Chambers arbitrator Lord Woolf, director general of NHS IT Richard Granger and Ernst & Young chairman Nick Land, were impressed with DLA Piper's ability to develop a strong strategic vision following the merger and continue to embark on an impressive growth strategy.
In the past 12 months DLA Piper has continued to invest in its existing offices recruiting a number of teams for its offices in London, Brussels, Moscow, Shanghai, Singapore and Spain. New offices were also opened in Atlanta, Beijing, Dubai, Frankfurt, Georgia, St Petersburg, Tokyo and Ukraine. Globally, DLA Piper has 59 offices in 22 countries and its substantial global presence is further enhanced through its exclusive alliances, which have expanded in recent months to include law firms across Africa, Australasia and the Middle East.
Nigel Knowles said: "This is an extremely prestigious award to be nominated for and I am delighted that we have won. In 2005 we achieved the largest ever law firm merger and since then we have continued to prove the strength of the business case. This award recognises the huge strides we have made globally and reinforces our approach to meeting the needs of all our clients. But we are not finished - there is always more for us to do. We have a strong Vision, we are fully aligned and we have the momentum and commitment to achieve more."
DLA Piper was selected for the coveted award ahead of Baker & McKenzie, Gide Loyrette Nouel, Latham & Watkins, Linklaters and White & Case, who were also short listed for the award.