Partners at City firms CMS UK, Nabarro and Olswang have voted ‘overwhelmingly’ in favour of a three-way merger, the firms announced this afternoon. 

The deal is expected to create a new ‘City powerhouse’ with a £1bn turnover that will become the world’s sixth largest law firm by headcount.

The merger is due to complete on 1 May 2017. The new firm will trade as CMS and the name of the UK LLP will be CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang LLP.

CMS senior partner Penelope Warne (pictured) said: ‘I am inspired today because we are delivering the next step to transform the legal services industry. Through this combination, we are delivering a modern firm that combines scale with an exceptional depth of sector expertise. A firm that is united in its central focus on its clients, people, its commitment to diversity and the increased development opportunities that come from stronger and more global growth.'

Warne added that the merger 'is a great endorsement of the extraordinary export of English law throughout the world'.

The merger has been on the cards since talks were confirmed last month.

Once the deal is complete, CMS will have more than 1,000 partners and 7,500 employees across 65 offices in three countries, with combined revenues of £450m in the UK and in excess of £1bn across the world.

CMS says the merged firm will be a world leader in the sectors of energy, financial services, infrastructure projects, life sciences and healthcare, real estate, and technology media and telecommunications.

Andrew Inkester, managing partner of Nabarro, said this is a UK legal merger ‘that makes sense’.

He added: ‘It creates a firm that is more than the sum of its parts, bringing together our market-leading expertise in six strategic sectors. ‘Our international scale and ambition will deliver a global sector law firm to meet the future needs of clients and inspire our people.

‘Our combined talent and economies of scale will also deliver the resources we need to invest in new technologies and transform the way we deliver legal services.’