Clayton Utz scotches Hong Kong alliance

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Clayton Utz has severed an association with a Hong Kong law firm that it forged in 2010, as it seeks to reposition itself within a globalising environment as Australia's 'pre-eminent' top tier independent law firm.

Clayton Utz has announced today that its formal association with Hong Kong firm Haley & Co. would come to a close at the end of June this year.

Chief executive partner Darryl McDonough said instead, the firm was pursuing a strategy aiming to develop relationships with 'best in market' law firms in key international jurisdictions around the world.

"We entered into a formal association with Haley & Co. in 2010," McDonough said in a statement.

"We had been undertaking work in the wider Asia Pacific region for several years so it made sense to have an on the ground presence in Hong Kong.

"However with the changes in the legal services market we have developed a clear strategic focus on being Australia's pre-eminent top tier independent law firm with deep relationships with a comprehensive network of "best in market" law firms in key international jurisdictions."

Clayton Utz said this realignment led to the firm ending the Hong Kong association by 'mutual agreement'.

Haley & Co senior partner Glenn Haley said it would have "no effect" on his Hong Kong office. He even suggested the firm would remain in close contact with colleagues form Clayton Utz.

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