Kapellmann und Partner

Comment: Kapellmann is still one of the foremost names in its mainstay, construction. Competitors praise the practice for its “preeminent expertise.” This manifested itself in a steady stream of work and constant acquisition of new clients, incl. such notable companies as Bayer. But KuP is carving out a good reputation even away from its core discipline, proving that it has what it takes to be a full-service firm. The firm developed its antitrust and criminal law practices, and, thanks to experience in distribution antitrust and compliance, was active for corporates like Axel Springer, as well as regular client Thyssenkrupp.
The fact that the practices are generally developing separately from the core construction practice shows how KuP views these as independent entities. But this has meant that synergies between the practices were not fully exploited in the past. This is changing in the corporate practice: there is growing cooperation between the practices in work involving the insolvency or restructuring of construction and real estate developers. International aspects are featuring more heavily in activity, which is driving internationalization within the firm as a whole. KuP still has some way to go compared to competitors like GSK, but has the edge on many when it comes to innovation: in construction and public procurement, it has taken on a pioneering role in the current issues, incl. advice on building information modeling and an online procurement management platform.
Strengths: ?Construction.
Recommended for: ?Antitrust, ?compliance audits and investigations, ?corporate, ?M&A, ?public procurement. Project development and plant construction, state aid law, transport law.
See also: ?Düsseldorf.
Lawyers in Germany: 121
International network: Loose, long-established contacts to partner firms abroad; own office in Brussels.
Developments: KuP is known for its pleasant firm culture and team stability. Departures are rare, while the partnership is primarily staffed with lawyers who have come up through the ranks. This strategy has so far been a success, esp. in less traditional practices like compliance, where young Kapellmann lawyers are increasingly noticed by the market. It is a different story in the construction practice: young lawyers are struggling to step out from the shadow of the established partners and play a part in practice development. Some young partners and experienced associates thus recently turned their backs on the firm. Departures are generally not a rare thing for firms of Kapellmann’s size, but they were noteworthy for such a sturdy firm. Kapellmann will have to take action if it wants to hold on to its hallmark, its positive firm culture, in the long term.
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