Leading UK and French legal PR agencies Byfield Consultancy (Byfield) and Eliott & Markus (E&M) have forged a pioneering strategic alliance which launches today and consists of more than 40 professionals dedicated to communication and marketing for the legal sector.

The new alliance represents a formal agreement between the two partner agencies to work together on international legal sector clients who require European PR and wider EMEA representation and support.

This is the first such partnership between two independent communications agencies who are dedicated to the legal sector and it will strengthen both agencies’ offering, with more than 40 PR and branding professionals now providing integrated cross-border support to legal sector clients. The strategic alliance will also act as the launch-pad for the formation of a global network of like-minded specialist legal PR and associated consultancies.

Both E&M and Byfield have a leading track record in providing PR and communications advice to domestic, US and international law firms and currently collaborate on a range of cross-border legal PR mandates. Drawing on their combined strengths, the partnership will enable Byfield and E&M to offer clients operating in Europe an enhanced range of services across legal, litigation and crisis PR, content and campaign management, digital marketing, website design and branding.

A key driver for the new alliance is to capitalise on the on-going development of both London and Paris as leading legal centres of excellence, attracting ever more international law firms to do business in these global cities. The partnership will also provide clients with a gateway to profiling their services in Africa via E&M’s Casablanca office, in line with the significant opportunities offered by this fast-growing market.

Client mandates will be managed by staff based in London or Paris and tailored services will be provided by the relevant agency, depending on clients’ requirements. Byfield’s litigation PR expertise and thought leadership capabilities will be complemented by E&M’s branding, web and design hub, helping to unite clients’ messages with their digital identity and media presence.

The announcement today also represents the first step in the creation of a global network of specialist legal PR agencies and associated legal sector consultancies, brought together to serve the international legal sector. Byfield and E&M already work closely with other like-minded legal consultants in the US and Europe who will join the network in early 2019, with further growth planned thereafter in Asia, the Middle East and Africa

Gus Sellitto, Managing Director of Byfield, commented: “The legal map of Europe continues to develop, with international law firms and legal sector businesses looking to expand into EMEA and beyond, as part of their growth strategies. Our own experience shows us that clients are increasingly demanding PR services from dedicated legal PR specialists who know their markets inside out, as a preference to larger, more generalist agencies offering a multi-country approach. Our formal alliance with Eliott & Markus, as well as our ability to draw on our wider network of independent PR agencies, gives our clients the 360 legal communications services they increasingly need.” 

Amélie Lerosier, Managing Director of E&M, said: "There is a general concern for law firms to lean on a strong brand identity. For this reason, for the past 10 years, we have been striving to offer to our clients comprehensive advice, going beyond traditional expectations and borders. We have developed complementary expertise to press relations, such as design, digital or brand content, and have developed our know-how abroad, particularly in Africa. With Byfield, we are eager to expand this field of expertise and are delighted to rely on their experience in litigation PR, crisis communication and thought leadership. Our common ambition is to create a full service and responsive task force to respond globally to our customers' challenges.”

Amélie and Gus further commented:

“With our shared common values, similar workplace cultures and dedicated focus on the legal sector, we both place great importance on striving for excellence in client advice. By adopting an integrated ‘without borders’ approach to client service we believe we can foster creativity and share ideas, as well as delivering significant efficiencies for clients who want PR representation in a number of jurisdictions.” 

“We are very pleased to be jointly announcing our alliance today and are looking forward to combining the skills and capabilities of our respective agencies, to the benefit of our European, US and international legal sector clients.”