New firm Strelia launches in Brussels
Strelia. The firm is led by Olivier Clevenbergh, who was managing partner of Stibbe's Brussels arm from 2005 to 2011, and the partnership includes with former Stibbe board chairman and Brussels litigation head Jean-Pierre Fierens, former NautaDutilh partner Benoit Malvaux, and three partners from Belgian boutique Tossens & Prioux: Jean-Francois Tossens, Henri Culot and Henri Tack. Tossens & Prioux founding partner Andre Tossens has also joined as of counsel, and the new firm is rounded out by seven associates from Tossens, four from Stibbe and one from NautaDutilh.
Clevenbergh has said that the firm plans to expand "to reach a headcount of 30 to 50 lawyers over coming years".
Clevenbergh told Legal Week: "After the alliance with Herbert Smith, Gleiss Lutz and Stibbe ended I decided I wanted to change direction and do something new. There is a gap in the Belgian market for a new, smaller and more flexible type of law firm, which is why several partners from various firms started Strelia. Clients expect something new in the market, so we have received a good response.
"We also intend to work internationally. We will not be part of a network but remain independent and also work with foreign firms which need assistance in Belgium, especially in M&A and dispute resolution matters."