More Western Law Firms Setting Up Shop In Moscow……Now Kennedys

Posted: May 7, 2015 in Free Trade, Sanctions on Russia Meaningless, Society and Culture

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Kennedys launches in Moscow with former Clyde & Co Russian insurance head

May 6, 2015

Following troubled markets in Russia across 2014, a handful of firms have signalled a renewed interest in the region, with Kennedys being the most recent to set up a Russian base.

The firm has formed an arrangement with local firm and former best friend of Clyde & Co – CIS Advocates. The launch comes with the hire of Clyde & Co’s Constantin Saranchouk, who formerly headed the firm’s Russian insurance practice, along with an associate.

The office will operate as Kennedys CIS Advocates, and will be headed by Russian-qualified Saranchouk, who subject to SRA approval, will become a Kennedys Law LLP partner in due course. Saranchouk joins Kennedys having served at Clyde & Co since April 2011. Before this, he was the founding partner of Vetta Legal from October 2004 to April 2011.

The new office, launched today (6 May), will be the firm’s first Moscow base and have an initial focus on high value insurance disputes covering international power and energy, construction and aerospace markets. This will later develop to cover a wider client base that includes international insurance groups, London Market insurers and Russian insurance companies.

Kennedys’ Moscow launch is the latest in a series of oversea developments, including a cooperation agreement in China and a Joint Law Venture in Singapore, announced this year, as well as a formal association with Chilean insurance law firm, Sateler Depolo Diemoz Abogados (SDD).

Meanwhile, US Chadbourne & Parke also recently boosted its presence in Russia with the hire of energy partner Andrei Baev from Berwin Leighton Paisner as Moscow managing partner. This came after Chadbourne closed down its Kiev operations last summer.

Contrary to Chadbourne and Kennedy’s decision to scale up in Moscow, numerous firms cut back in Russia last year as US-led economic sanctions heavily affected the debt financing capabilities of some of Russia’s largest banks. Firms known to be affected by the sanctions included Allen & Overy, Clifford Chance, Linklaters, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, White & Case and Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton, while Clyde & Co closed its Russia office in 2013 after it found a lack of opportunity in the market.



Kennedys CIS Advocates launches in Moscow
6 May 2015
Kennedys was founded in 1899

After qualifying as a Barrister and Solicitor in the State of Victoria, Australia, UK-born Charles Frederick Kennedy moved to London, qualified as a Solicitor in England and became a Partner at Paddison, Chapelle & Kennedy.

Over the years, Kennedy was in several partnerships: Kennedy, Danvers & Co; C. Frederick Kennedy & Co; Kennedy Lindo & Co; and Kennedy Genese & Co.

Sadly, Kennedy was taken ill and passed away in 1942 at the age of 79.

Genese recollects Kennedy well:

“Kennedy had an Australian accent … and a keen sense of humour. He was friendly and talkative with a booming voice and a very friendly personality. He was a man of strong character and was very proud and nothing would have pleased him more to know that Kennedys had grown to its present day size.”

Genese took over the practice, keeping the name of the firm, before expanding and becoming Kennedy, Genese & Syson and later Kennedy, Genese, Syson & Lewis.

In the 1960s, Partner Eric Lewis noticed that people were getting tongue tied with the name at the time ‘Kennedy, Genese, Syson & Lewis’ and suggested that the name was shortened. At the same time John F. Kennedy had just become President of the USA and was very much “in the fashion”.

A neutral name of ‘Kennedys’ was agreed and the firm has continued to practice under this name ever since.


  1. 0jr says:

    the irelanders like the jews are not the loyalist of amerikans


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