US legal firm could bring 75 jobs to Derry

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A leading US legal firm that specialises in entertainment law could be set to create 75 jobs in Derry with the opening of its largest European Office.

Russell Smith , founding partner of SmithDehn told The Lawyer magazine that the New York based firm has been in negotiations with InvestNI over its plans for Derry.

Smith said the aim would be to make the office its biggest in Europe, with a preliminary target to have 75-lawyers within five years.

Derry MLA Mark H Durkan said he had been in talks with the US firm over the summer.

“I am delighted the firm has recently revealed it hopes to set up their European office right here in Derry. Those I have spoken with have hinted that this global organisation could bring up-to 75 high quality jobs.

“This is exactly the investment we need here in Derry with our high skilled workforce, as well as having a legal qualifying body on our doorstep in the University of Ulster Magee campus.

“The SDLP have been championing the call for the right kind of investment and I have personally been working hard to persuade SmithDehn to locate their office here in Derry city. I am hopeful this is soon to become a reality and will continue to work closely with those in management to secure this vital opportunity for local people.”

The news comes as the firm, US tv network HBO and the University of Ulster announced details of a new entertainment law course at Magee.

The Masters level course has been designed to meet the growing industry need for legal professionals who have specific expertise in media, entertainment and sports law.

Demand for this exciting and dynamic new course is expected to be high and space is limited to 25 places. Applications must be received by 10 January 2014