WHILE keeping their roots firmly planted in Port Elizabeth, two Bay lawyers have taken their legal expertise national and hope to form international links.
Former Mr South Africa Denver Burns and longtime Bay lawyer Max Boqwana have established their own law firm, Boqwana Burns Incorporated with offices in the city, Mthatha and Johannesburg.
"With about 70% of economic activity taking place around Gauteng, one cannot ignore the province in terms of running a successful business," Boqwana said about the decision to branch out.
The venture was officially launched at a glitzy affair last week. Celebrating the endeavour were national celebrities including FHM model Roxy Louw, former Springbok rugby player Breyton Paulse, and Bay mayor Zanoxolo Wayile.
The offices, which employ 16 lawyers and 30 support staff between them, opened to the public on Friday last week.
The Port Elizabeth branch operates from the Greenacres Office Park in Newton Park, while the Johannesburg branch operates from Rivonia Boulevard and the Mthatha branch is situated in the East Cape Development Corporation building in Fort Gale.
Burns said as Mr South Africa he had been exposed to a wide network of professionals and had decided to make use of it by taking the bold step to start this new venture.
He said he had worked with Boqwana since 2006 when he did his articles with Boqwana's law firm at the time.
"We are similar individuals with the same passion and vision. We both wanted to make an impact in the legal fraternity."
Burns said that although they both wanted to establish a national footprint, they were adamant to plough experience and resources back into the Eastern Cape.
"I'm Port Elizabeth born and bred and you have to give back to the town that made you who you are," Burns said.
Boqwana said he and Burns had decided to travel between the three offices, supported by a team of professional lawyers covering a broad spectrum of services.
"For now we will focus on establishing our firm in South Africa, but we do plan on establishing international links in the future," Boqwana said.