Hogan Lovells to name first sole CEO

Hogan Lovells, the global law firm born out of the 2010 merger between Washington-based Hogan & Hartson and London-based Lovells, plans to name Steve Immelt as its new chief executive in 2014, the firm announced today.

Immelt, a partner based in Washington, would become the firm’s first sole chief executive, taking over the role currently held by co-CEOs Warren Gorrell and David Harris, who are based in Washington and London, respectively.

(Courtesy of Hogan Lovells) - Stephen Immelt.

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Immelt’s appointment is subject to a vote from the firm’s partners, and is expected to be finalized Sunday. He is slated to take over July 2014. David Hudd, a partner in London, would be deputy chief executive.

Hogan Lovells has spent the last three-and-a-half years integrating operations following the merger, one of the largest law firm combinations to date by revenue and attorney headcount, with about 2,500 lawyers around the world. The firm’s revenue and profits are up this year, Gorrell said, and the firm is in a good position to transition to a single leader.

“Our objective is to have a ‘one firm’ worldwide approach, and having a sole CEO is an important statement for the way we operate and, symbolically, who we are,” he said.

Immelt said he does not plan to make any major changes, but rather continue the firm’s “relentless focus on the experience clients have with us” and making sure it is consistent across all the firm’s global offices.

“We’re now in a position to add more intensity with the way we’re interacting with clients and engaging with them,” he said.

The firm is especially focused on growing in Latin America and Africa, having opened offices in Rio de Janeiro last year and in South Africa this month after acquiring South African law firm Routledge Modis.

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