Italy: Studio Legale Sutti Opens In Bucharest And Becomes The Largest Law Firm In South-Eastern Europe
Last Updated: 13 May 2003

Studio Legale Sutti (SLS) has welcomed to its ranks the partners and associates of Vitzman, Webster and Partners, the fourth largest practice in terms of both size and turnover of Romania.

The signing of Vitzman, Webster, after two years of contacts and discussions with Romanian firms, completes a plan which commenced with SLS's opening in Sofia in 2001 and continued in Belgrade in 2002, after similar agreements were reached between the original Italian partnership and local leading practices, and makes for unequalled regional coverage and critical mass. SLS is also the only independent firm in those three jurisdictions to be represented in London and in Tokyo, besides of course in Milan and Rome.

Italy is itself the country with the largest number of subsidiaries and incorporated joint-ventures in Romania, and second, after the US, in terms of aggregated annual turnover of those and of trade-generated cash flow.

"Having neither the ambition nor possibility of going global ourselves, we realised at the end of the nineties that a business opportunity definitely existed for us as an Italian firm to evolve into a regional leader, provided that we were able to avoid, in doing so, the 'colonialistic' attitudes which have often plagued international mergers" says Stefano Sutti, managing partner of Studio Legale Sutti.

"Anglo-Saxon, lockstep-based firms are ill-equipped to enter those markets, and Italy has always been the gateway between South-Eastern Europe and the rest of the world; we realised that the project would not harm our international networking in the least. On the contrary, since nobody else is there, we could significantly expand the range of services offered by Studio Legale Sutti without posing competive threats to any of our contacts in the UK, Germany, the US or elsewhere.

This was a primary concern for us, as our traditional market positioning as 'lawyers' lawyers' has been strongly emphasised following the takeover of many of the largest and finest Italian firms by global practices. While Albania remains an obvious option, we believe that Romania has been a real turning point; our first priority is now to make work what we have achieved through substantial efforts".

A cocktail party has been scheduled in the new Bucharest SLS office on 27/06/2003, with the participation of local Italian, Bulgarian and Serbian authorities and businesses, to celebrate.

Studio Legale Sutti is, according to most international sources, one of the main independent law firms in Italy. A 110 fee earners-strong, full-service business practice established in 1953, it has domestic offices in Milan, Rome, Genoa, Bergamo-Brescia and Monza. Especially well-known in the high-tech, pharmaceutical and brand-name product sectors, SLS has a special focus on servicing foreign lawyers' needs related to the Italian jurisdiction - which nowadays accounts for one third of its turnover -, with an emphasis on M&A, IP, and contentious work. For more information, see

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