Association law

Eversheds “completes” the exit from Russia but retains the association’s office

Eversheds Sutherland has announced that it has completed the transition of its Russian operations, but maintains links with the region through an association with a newly created company, populated by former Eversheds employees.

It comes nearly two months after several major companies announced they were leaving the country.

The company said in a statement that it had “no longer” a “presence in the country in response to the invasion of Ukraine”. However, he will maintain ties with all former Eversheds lawyers and employees in Russia through ties with a new partnership firm called Birch Legal, which launched on Monday.

“Birch Legal will become Eversheds Sutherland’s relationship firm in Russia, serving the needs of its international clients,” the firm’s statement read.

The new company will be led by Mikhail Timonov, former commercial, corporate and M&A manager of Eversheds in Russia, with the support of his partner Yury Pugach, former manager of Eversheds in Moscow.

In early March, Eversheds was one of several international law firms to announce the closure of Russian operations following global condemnation of Putin’s offensive against Ukraine. Eversheds had offices in Moscow and St. Petersburg. Across his two offices, the firm’s operations in Russia numbered 52, comprising five partners, 33 other lawyers and 14 corporate services employees.

At the time, the firm said it was a “decision that was ‘not taken lightly’ and ‘is not a reflection on our valued colleagues in these offices’.” Our priority now is to support our 50 colleagues in Russia and to work together to ensure an orderly transition of the company while respecting our professional obligations.”

The firm added in its latest statement: “We wish the circumstances that led to the establishment of Birch Legal to be different, nevertheless we wish our friends and former colleagues in Russia good luck with their new venture.”