Gowlings, a leading Canadian law firm, and Wragge Lawrence Graham & Co (WLG), a leading U.K. law firm, are joining forces to create a new international legal practice called Gowling WLG. The new practice will launch in January 2016.
With more than 1,500 legal professionals in 18 cities across Canada, the U.K., Europe, Asia and the Middle East, Gowling WLG will be a Global 100 legal practice from day one. It will also be the first international legal combination to be co-led by a Canadian firm.
Gowling WLG will provide clients with world-class legal expertise and multi-jurisdictional support in key global sectors, including life sciences, manufacturing, power generation and distribution, projects and infrastructure, real estate, resources (mining, oil & gas), and technology and communications. It will also be home to one of the world's premier intellectual property practices, and a full suite of business law and litigation services.
"This is an exciting and historic step forward for our two firms that will enable us to better serve our clients in Canada, the U.K. and around the world," said Scott Jolliffe, Chair and Chief Executive Officer of Gowlings. "Gowling WLG will provide clients with a broader service offering, a deeper pool of legal expertise and greater multi-jurisdictional support - all while delivering the same personal, responsive service and value that both its founding firms are known for."
"Gowling WLG is a true coming together of like-minded firms," said David Fennell, Chief Executive of WLG. "In addition to complementary practice and sector strengths, a strong commitment to client service, and a shared vision for international growth, both WLG and Gowlings have fostered internal cultures that champion a people-first approach, innovation and collaboration. Together, we look forward to building one of the top sector-focused legal practices in the world."
Both Gowlings and WLG have reputations as innovation leaders, giving clients creative and flexible options in service, pricing and delivery models. Earlier this year, Gowlings launched Gowlings Practical™, a groundbreaking approach to legal project management that gives clients greater cost-certainty, efficiency and value for their legal spend. In March, WLG received the Legal Business award for "U.K. Legal Technology Team of the Year" for its industry-leading use of technology in the delivery of legal services.
Gowlings and WLG also share the distinction of being repeatedly ranked as top employers in their respective markets: Gowlings has been named one of the 50 Best Employers in Canada by Aon Hewitt for five straight years, and WLG has been a fixture on the U.K.'s Best Workplaces list, appearing every year since the list began in 2001.
"Both of our firms see this as just the beginning for Gowling WLG," said Jolliffe. "Over the next few years, we will continue to enhance our global platform in strategic areas by adding other like-minded firms to Gowling WLG, with the goal of providing our clients with world-class legal expertise, seamless service and unparalleled value wherever their business takes them."