Insight

How Dentons Russia Dominates the Global Market

Florian Schneider of 2019 "Law Firm of the Year" winner Dentons Russia discusses his career accomplishments.

Dentons "Law Firm of the Year" Interview
Best Lawyers

Best Lawyers

March 15, 2019 10:09 AM

Florian Schneider, Dentons Russia managing partner from 2012 to 2018, who specializes in corporate law, speaks to Best Lawyers CEO Phillip Greer about the firm’s year of success and innovation, despite the difficult economic market in Russia. A unique mentorship structure and technology lab set the firm apart, and have worked to secure its decade-long reputation. The firm received the 2019 "Law Firm of the Year" award for Labor and Employment Law in Russia.

What led you to join Dentons?

I joined Dentons in 2007. I got the offer at the right moment, although I was very committed to my old firm. I was working for a German law firm and I received the offer from Dentons when the German firm was having difficulty deciding how to develop their partnership. This was right before the 2008 financial crisis, so my business was actually very good. I saw it as both a professional and a personal opportunity to move from a German law firm to an international law firm. When I finally did move, I brought 10 other lawyers with me. I think that was a big move within Moscow, from one law firm to another.

"The key is winning new clients and showing that we are better than our competitors."

What achievements stand out to you from this past year?

We have now been ranked at the top in employment by all major international and local rankings for almost 10 years. Employment and migration law matters have been one of our core strengths in Russia and Kyiv for going on 27 years. Marina Ryzhkova, the head of our Russian labor law practice, is a highly regarded attorney with a very strong reputation on the market. Our clients value the quality of our advice, the depth of our experience, our responsiveness, and high efficiency of our team. We work in ordinary matters concerning medicine, employment, and labor, but we are also experts in complicated scenarios involving structuring staff reductions, transfers, and managing labor law disputes with individuals and larger workforces. This history and our endurance as a firm is something for us to be quite proud of.

Can you tell me a little bit about your firm’s mentorship program for the Russia office and how you support practicing attorneys?

We have several mentorship and education programs. At the local level, we run a traditional mentorship system through the heads of practice groups. We also have educational training at an office level through a summer program dedicated to junior and mid-level associates. This continuing work is very helpful. Finally, we also have regional level e-learning programs. These have been developed especially for Dentons associates and counsels. Our firm won an award for this online training program, which is called the Senior Associate Development Program. This training takes place once a year. I am one of the many mentors in these programs, where senior associates prepare for partnerships, learn how to develop clients, how to improve their client service, and how to work with their peers.

How does Dentons stay agile against competitors when you do labor and employment bills?

Our labor and employment practice lawyers are very engaged and result-oriented, so we are always looking for solutions for our clients. We also have concrete experience and a long history working this sort of cases, which gives us perspective and gives a better understanding of what is happening in the field, especially with labor laws. The profound experience of our attorneys like Marina Ryzhkova, who already has more than 20 years with the firm, really sets us apart. With all the experience she has earned over the last two decades, the fact that she has stayed with the firm adds to our excellent reputation. The key is winning new clients and showing that we are better than our competitors.

Is there anything you want to share about your firm, either for this practice area or the groups that you are particularly proud of?

Despite the impact of the economic and political situation on the Russian economy, our firm strengthened its Russian practice in both 2017 and 2018. We hired three more partners in 2017 and one counsel became partner, so in effect, four new partners joined us in 2017. We also hired 17 new lawyers, and became the biggest law firm tax practice in Russia. We are becoming stronger even during this crisis. We have tried to attract the best clients on the market and our local reputation has surely helped with that, but of course the Dentons brand itself is working and enables us to attract the best people. We have shown creativity in the digital arena and developed the Dentons’ Russia Legal Innovations Laboratory. This is oriented toward developing and implementing innovative technologies in the field of legal tech. We assisted the Federation of Computer Sports of Russia with creating a legal framework for e-sports. Dentons is the most active law firm in the working groups to implement the “Digital Economy of the Russian Federation” state program. A year ago, our lawyers drew up the draft of the first international robotics act in the world and also created the first concept for regulation of the Internet of Things in Russia. I would say that these were the highlights of our development over the last two years.

[RELATED: Russian voters cast ballots today]

Related Articles

Trending Top Five: Critical Corporate Components for 2022


by Justin Smulison

It’s no longer “business as usual” for most of Corporate America. With a growing list of challenges facing the legal and financial health of many companies, we talked to several major General Counsel about the biggest areas in which businesses should remain vigilant.

Corporate Advice From General Counsel

A Message From Best Lawyers Regarding Ukraine and Russia Listings


by Best Lawyers

Best Lawyers is pausing all research efforts in Ukraine and Russia for 2023.

Ukraine and Russian Research Update

All Doped Up


by Howard Rapke

Keeping elite international sporting events free of banned substances is an endless game of cat and mouse. Here’s an overview of the legal efforts set up to do, in theory, exactly that.

Legal Efforts Against Drugs at Olympics

Russian Rubles are Going Digital


by Rebecca Blackwell

Russia is moving toward the ever-expanding trend of digital currency.

Russian Rubles are Going Digital

Announcing the 2022 Best Lawyers™ in Russia


by Best Lawyers

The results include an elite field of top lawyers and firms.

Announcing the 2022 Best Lawyers™ in Russia

From Russia, With Law


by Best Lawyers

The bite of U.S. sanctions aside, Cleary Gottlieb partner Yulia Solomakhina sees great promise for commerce and the law as Russia increasingly embraces markets and technology.

An Interview With Cleary Gottlieb

How Russia's Global Policy Is Impacting Mergers and Acquisitions


by Best Lawyers

Alexei Zakharko and Mathieu Fabre-Magnan disscuss how they are preparing for emerging trends in the next couple of years.

An Interview With Dentons Russia

In the News: Washington, D.C.


by Compiled by Nicole Ortiz

A summary of newsworthy content from Washington D.C. lawyers and law firms.

Washington, D.C. In the News 2018

Q&A with Florian Schneider, Managing Partner of Dentons Russia


by Best Lawyers

A question and answer session with Florian Schneider, the managing partner of "Law Firm of the Year," Dentons Russia.

Florian Schneider – Dentons Russia

An Overview of Russia


by Anton Novoseltsev

The approval is only required if it is requested by a member of the supervisory board, a member of the executive board, a CEO, or a 1 percent shareholder.

Overview of Russia

Changes in the Legal Regulation of Foreign Investment in Russia


by Artem Zhavoronkov and Oleg Lovtsov

Introducing significant changes in the legal regulation of foreign investment in the Russian Federation.

Foreign Investment Russia

Russia's Evolving Legal Environment and the Next Economic Upswing


by Andrey Goltsblat

Russia's Legal Environment

Trending Articles

Announcing the 2023 The Best Lawyers in America Honorees


by Best Lawyers

Only the top 5.3% of all practicing lawyers in the U.S. were selected by their peers for inclusion in the 29th edition of The Best Lawyers in America®.

Gold strings and dots connecting to form US map

Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch in America for 2023


by Best Lawyers

The third edition of Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch in America™ highlights the legal talent of lawyers who have been in practice less than 10 years.

Three arrows made of lines and dots on blue background

Announcing the 2023 The Best Lawyers in Canada Honorees


by Best Lawyers

The Best Lawyers in Canada™ is entering its 17th edition for 2023. We highlight the elite lawyers awarded this year.

Red map of Canada with white lines and dots

Announcing the 2022 Best Lawyers® in the United States


by Best Lawyers

The results include an elite field of top lawyers listed in the 28th Edition of The Best Lawyers in America® and in the 2nd Edition of Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch in America for 2022.

2022 Best Lawyers Listings for United States

Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch in Canada 2023


by Best Lawyers

The year 2023 marks the second edition of Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch in Canada, highlighting professionals earlier in their legal careers all across Canada.

Blue background with white stairs formed out of lines

All Eyes to the Ones on the Rise


by Rebecca Blackwell

Our 2023 honorees recognized in Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch in America™ tell us more about how their path to law formed, what lead them to their practice areas and how they keep steadfast in their passion to serve others.

Person walking between glass walls towards window

Announcing the 2022 Best Lawyers in Canada™


by Best Lawyers

The results include an elite field of top lawyers listed in the 16th Edition of The Best Lawyers in Canada™ and 1st Edition of Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch in Canada.

Announcing the 2022 Best Lawyers in Canada™

Press and Publicity: How Television and Social Media Impact Legal Careers


by Justin Smulison

In recent years, with social media giving minute by minute reporting, many lawyers are finding themselves thrust into a spotlight they never planned for. How are lawyers grappling with unexpected stardom, media coverage and merciless influencers?

Close up of camera at news station

Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch – The Future of Legal Talent Looks Bright


by Justin Smulison

Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch is launching its second edition in the United States, and after talking with both a company leader and esteemed lawyers on the list, the importance of this prestigious list is evident.

Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch in America 2022

Famous Songs Unprotected by Copyright Could Mean Royalties for Some


by Michael B. Fein

A guide to navigating copyright claims on famous songs.

Can I Sing "Happy Birthday" in Public?

How A Claim Can Create A ‘Class’ of Its Own


by Justin Smulison

One civil claim can help a victim recover, prevent others from the same harm and even save lives. Tom Connick has experienced this directly, having been at the ground floor of injury claims that have led to high-value class action settlements.

Fire Consuming Paper Money

The Real Camille: An Interview with Johnny Depp’s Lawyer Camille Vasquez


by Rebecca Blackwell

Camille Vasquez, a young lawyer at Brown Rudnick, sat down with Best Lawyers CEO Phillip Greer to talk about her distinguished career, recently being named partner and what comes next for her.

Camille Vasquez in office

Introducing Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch


by Best Lawyers

Meet the next wave of top legal talent.

Ones to Watch

Protecting Small Business Owners: Trial Experts Connick Law LLC Notoriously Successful with Fire Litigation


by Justin Smulison

When small business owners become the target of insurance companies in fire-related lawsuits, hiring a firm with a reputation for understanding the science of fire suppression trials can save their livelihoods.

Gold Indoor Sprinkler Heads on Red Background

Announcing the 2022 "Best Law Firms" Rankings


by Best Lawyers

The 2022 “Best Law Firms” publication includes all “Law Firm of the Year” recipients, national and metro Tier 1 ranked firms and editorial from thought leaders in the legal industry.

The 2022 Best Law Firms Awards

Choosing a Title Company: What a Seller Should Expect


by Roy D. Oppenheim

When it comes to choosing a title company, how much power exactly does a seller have?

Choosing the Title Company As Seller