American firm Scott+Scott has hired Damien F. Berkhout to lead its Amsterdam office as well as adding a counsel and a senior associate to the team.
Berkhout joins the firm as a partner from international corporate law firm Buren, while Stefan Tuinenga has taken up the position of counsel after leaving Stibbe.
Berkhout will lead the firm’s new office in Amsterdam, which opened earlier this month. He is a dispute resolution specialist with a focus on complex commercial claims, including antitrust and collective action claims, and crossborder litigation. He took up his new role earlier this month.
Berkhout began his career in 2007 at Stibbe. Between 2012 and 2013 he spent a year as a visiting lawyer at Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison in New York. He joined Buren as a partner in August 2017 and later co-headed the firm’s litigation department.
He specialises in claimant-side litigation, representing major corporate companies as well as shareholders. He represented a major air cargo company in the Dutch air cargo follow-on damages cases, as well as pharmaceutical company Mylan in the defence of a hostile takeover bid by Teva.
“I am excited to join Scott+Scott, because it is an opportunity to be a part of the first international plaintiff firm in the Netherlands,” Berkhout said, adding that the firm is well-positioned to provide a global private enforcement strategy.
“Clients deserve protection against wrongdoing, not only in the US, but also in the Netherlands and elsewhere.” he said.
Buren did not respond to a request for comment.
Tuinenga, 35, has taken on the position of counsel in the firm’s new office. He also began his career at Stibbe in 2008, where he worked for seven-and-a-half years. More recently he spent over two years assisting in the establishment of Fair Trade Authority Curacao, acting as the new agency’s director since December 2018.
Whilst at Stibbe, Tuinenga worked on the defence side of several high-profile follow-on damages cases, such as air cargo, wire steel and gas insulated switchgear. He also acted in European Commission and Dutch authority investigations during this time, and in 2014 he was seconded to KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, where he was responsible for the airline’s worldwide competition and anti-bribery matters.
Tuinenga said that now Curacao’s competition authority is up and running, with four cartel decisions issued in 2018, it was a good time for him to move on. Scott+Scott’s new Amsterdam office was “the perfect opportunity”, he said. He also started the role earlier this month.
“What I love about this opportunity… is working on the claimant side, after having worked on the defence side for many years. This different perspective is refreshing,” he said.
Tuinenga also welcomed the opportunities in the Dutch market, noting that the country has been one of the top jurisdictions for damages claims. “Scott+Scott is the first international firm devoted to claimant-side litigation in the Netherlands, so it’s great to be on board with them,” he said.
Stibbe did not respond to a request for comment.
Senior associate Marianne Meijssen will also join the firm next month from Dutch boutique Maverick. Like Berkhout and Tuinenga, she started her career at Stibbe, in 2012, before moving to Maverick in 2016.
Managing partner David Scott said the three new hires are all strong additions to the firm’s global litigation team. He added that the firm will continue to grow its international presence “to ensure that all of our clients are served regardless of where they are headquartered or where their damages occur.”