Weekly Update – 27th of February 2023

Moves:

UK & Ireland

Akin Gump hires second finance partner from White & Case

White & Case has taken another hit in the City after losing a second banking partner to Akin Gump. Paul Yin makes the move, having joined White & Case in March 2022. Prior to this, he spent nearly eight years at Skadden, working also at Ashurst in Sydney and training at Corrs Chambers Westgarth.

Dentons targeted for energy team raid in Scotland

An energy and infrastructure team from Dentons’ Edinburgh office is heading up the road to join Addleshaw Goddard, The Lawyer has learnt. It is understood that partners David Cruickshank, Andrew Orr and Euan Wilson will be making the move shortly.

Debevoise beefs up London arbitration team with hire of King’s Counsel from Gibson Dunn

Debevoise & Plimpton has beefed up its ranks of senior international arbitrators with the hire of Jeff Sullivan KC from Gibson Dunn & Crutcher in London.

Law firm Jenner & Block hires London and DC arbitration partners

AmLaw 200 firm Jenner & Block has hired two arbitration partners, one apiece in London and Washington DC, marking an expansion of the firm’s practice on both sides of the Atlantic. Norton Rose Fulbright partner James Rogers joins Jenner & Block’s London office from Norton Rose Fulbright, where he had been a partner since 2013. King & Spalding partner Kenneth Beale will join the firm’s Washington D.C. office.

Ince Capital Market Head Latest To Leave As Part Of Duo Joining Womble Bond

Embattled U.K. listed law firm Ince has suffered another partner departure, with its capital markets head joining Womble Bond Dickinson. Rebecca Ferguson, who was at Ince for almost a decade and prior to that at legacy firm Davenport Lyons, which was acquired by Ince following its administration in 2014. She also has previous experience at Herbert Smith Freehills and Clifford Chance.

EMEA

Gibson Dunn Hits Shearman For Another Abu Dhabi Partner

Gibson Dunn & Crutcher has further expanded its newly launched Abu Dhabi office with the hire of another Shearman & Sterling partner. Abu Dhabi based banking and finance partner Laleh Shahabi is joining Gibson Dunn after just under four years at Shearman.

KWM Disputes King’s Counsel Joins Dubai Boutique

King & Wood Mallesons veteran Tim Taylor KC has left the firm for a Middle East litigation boutique.

APAC

Asia Partner Moves: Han Kun Takes Tian Yuan’s Shanghai Head, Offshore Firms Play Partner Musical Chairs

Han Kun Law Offices has hired away Tian Yuan Law Firm’s Shanghai managing partner Xu Ping. A seasoned advisor on securities, mergers and acquisitions, restructure and financing deals, Yu joins Han Kun as a partner.

DLA Piper Hires Former Australian Federal Court Judge as Advisor

DLA Piper has hired a former Justice of the Federal Court of Australia as an advisor to large public and private sector clients on investigations, class actions and inquiries. John Middleton KC, who served on the court for 16 years and retired in December, will be based in the Melbourne office of DLA Piper, which is trying to raise its profile in Australia.

Luthra & Luthra Hires TMT partner from EY India

Luthra & Luthra has expanded its current four-member TMT practice with the hire of EY’s India’s regulatory advisory director, Vikash Kukreti, as a partner.

Al Tamimi Hires Dubai Shipping Partner from Rival Hadef & Partners

Al Tamimi & Co has hired a specialist shipping partner to its shipping, aviation and logistics department. With over 13 years of experience advising on a wide range of shipping and international trade matters, Wesley Wood has spent five years working in the UAE, building a reputation across the region’s shipping and maritime legal market, the firm said in a statement.

The Americas

On the Move: Tracking the Ins and Outs of California Lawyers

New hires, promotions and awards from across the California legal market.

Greenberg Traurig Adds Orrick Public Finance, Infrastructure Team in Houston

A team of five public finance and infrastructure lawyers from Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe, led by Houston office leader Adrian Patterson, moved to Greenberg Traurig, which is targeting growth in its public finance and infrastructure practice in Texas and firmwide.

Greenberg Traurig Lands Former Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney Class Action Co-Chair

Greenberg Traurig is expanding its litigation practice in Miami with a new shareholder, A. Sheila Oretsky, who previously helped lead Pennsylvania-based Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney’s class action practice.

O’Melveny Adds to Labor and Employment Practice in Texas With Locke Lord Partner

Kimberly Williams, who joined O’Melveny & Myers as a partner in Dallas on Wednesday, said she is excited about growing the firm’s labor and employment practice in Texas.

Cozen O’Connor’s Canadian Buildout Continues With Hire of Corporate and Securities Litigation Chair

Oliver Hanson will join the Vancouver office of the Philadelphia-based firm, with a focus on client retention and growth of the firm’s footprint north of the border.

Cooley Eyes Middle-Market Dealmaking With 5-Partner Team

Cooley has welcomed a five-partner private equity and M&A team as the firm pursues growth in the middle market—in its first move on the U.S. lateral market since it laid off lawyers and staff in December. The team comes to the firm’s Denver office from Perkins Coie. It is led by Sonny Allison, a 20-year veteran of Perkins, with partners Kester Spindler, Danielle Fortier, Amelia Davis and Jeffrey Beuche.

In-House

Sprinklr promotes chief compliance officer to general counsel amid job cuts

New York-based software startup Sprinklr has promoted its chief compliance officer to be its next general counsel and corporate secretary. Jack Scott currently also serves as deputy general counsel and will take over as GC and corporate secretary next month from Dan Haley, who is leaving the firm, although CEO Ragy Thomas said he was still acting as an adviser.

Sullivan & Cromwell Partner to Become Top Lawyer at Apollo

The law firm’s co-chairs called Whitney Chatterjee’s move the “next chapter of her path-breaking career.”

Promotions & Appointments:

Addleshaw Goddard elects professional services specialist as new senior partner

Top 25 UK law firm Addleshaw Goddard (AG) has elected Aster Crawshaw, a partner in its professional practices group, as its next senior partner. London-based Crawshaw will take over the role on 1 May from Charles Penney following the end of his second term as senior partner.

Pinsent Masons Appoints Next Melbourne Office Leader

Pinsent Masons has appointed a construction partner as the next head of its Melbourne office, making for an all-female leadership team across its three Australian offices. Phillipa Beck, who joined the firm from Norton Rose Fulbright in 2020, is a construction law specialist, dual qualified as a lawyer and civil engineer, advising on project delivery and disputes across the energy and infrastructure sectors in Asia Pacific.

Mergers & Alliances:

IP firm Petošević merges with Middle Eastern service provider CWB Group

Eastern European IP firm Petošević has merged with CWB Group, an IP service provider across the Middle East and North African region. CWB is a portfolio company of GC Capital, a private equity firm investing from the Gulf Cooperation Council to south-east Asia.

Australian Firm Slater & Gordon Set For Private Equity Takeover

The world’s first listed law firm is under offer by private equity investor Allegro.

McKinsey’s 10 Principles for Successful Law Firm Mergers

Partners from the global consultancy take lessons from advising corporations and other professional services firms on mergers, bringing tips for how law firms can have a better strategic approach to growth.

Office Openings & Closing:

Charles Russell Speechlys kickstarts private capital initiative

Charles Russell Speechlys is to launch a new practice that focuses on landing new mandates from global private capital clients, families and their businesses. The initiative is being led by Lord Andrew Hay who will serve as the offering’s chairman. Lord Hay previously served as the global head of Knight Frank’s residential division and was appointed as a non-executive director at Charles Russell Speechlys in 2020.

SRA closes Fletcher Day “with immediate effect” to protect clients

The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) has stepped in to close London firm Fletcher Day.

Taylor Wessing Doubles Office Space In Cambridge

Taylor Wessing has moved to a new office in Cambridge, doubling the size of its space in the city in the process. The firm has moved into 3,300 sq ft of offices in central Cambridge which sit opposite the Microsoft Research headquarters and Amazon’s base in the city.

Financials:

Goodwin Procter’s City revenue inches up in 2022

After a bumper 2021 financial year in the City, growth has slowed for Goodwin Procter’s London base in 2022. The latest figures from the firm show a rise of 3 per cent from $161.8m in 2021 to $166.7m in 2022. This comes after a bumper year in which turnover jumped by 63 per cent from $99.1m to $161.8m in 2021.

Hogan Lovells posts 7% fall in revenue to $2.4bn following ‘challenging’ year

Transatlantic law firm Hogan Lovells has seen both its revenue and profit per equity partner (PEP) fall in 2022 in the face of what CEO Miguel Zaldivar portrayed as a year of challenges, ranging from the war in Ukraine to “unprecedented inflation levels”.

Adams and Reese Posts Positive Numbers in Busy Southeast Market

Revenue for the New Orleans-based firm grew by 6% to $137.8 million, while profits per equity partner also rose in 2022.

Husch, Actively Courting Law Firm Combinations, Grows Revenue 17%

The Missouri-founded firm is looking for combinations that could put it in Nashville, other Southeast markets, and/or the Northwest, said Paul Eberle, CEO of Husch.

McDermott Sees 9% Revenue, PEP Growth, With ‘Recession-Resistant’ Practices

The firm saw more than $164 million in revenue from its European offices in 2022 and 33% growth in its London office, said firm chair Ira Coleman, who joked that one reason the London office did so well is that “people pay more for the accents.” He also said the firm’s international haul was up 12%, besting the firm’s overall performance.

Diversity & Inclusion:

UK shadow justice secretary calls for greater diversity in the judiciary

The UK’s shadow justice secretary Steve Reed MP has called on the legal profession to increase judicial diversity to better mirror society.

‘Women Don’t Think About Their Own Futures Enough’—Reignite Founder on the Importance of Peer Networks

Lisa Unwin will speak at the closing plenary session of this year’s Women, Influence & Power in Law conference between March 8-9.

Market Commentary:

One year on, International Bar Association vows continued support for Ukraine

The International Bar Association (IBA) has underscored its continued support of Ukraine as the country marks the first anniversary of its invasion by Russia. Noting that it was founded ‘to promote and protect the rule of law and international justice’, the IBA again condemned the invasion today.

Law Firms and Clients Worry Pandemic-Era Lawyers are Undertrained

Amid the Great Recession, law firms laid off swaths of junior lawyers, particularly in practices like real estate. Four years later, as the market rebounded, they realized they didn’t have many qualified mid-level real estate lawyers.

Attorney Compensation: Flush With Cash or Pulling Back?

After two years of ballooning benefits, the air is coming out of Big Law’s big lateral and retention bonuses. Recruiters, analysts and firm leaders say the landscape that led to things like six-figure signing bonuses for mid-level associates and creative perks like $100 non-work meal vouchers has changed, as the transactional market softened last year and the economic outlook for 2023 remains uncertain.

Rare Survey of Deputy GCs Turns Up Widespread Dismay

One hundred percent of respondents reported being “stressed or burned out,” and 94% said their current employer does not offer them the opportunity to develop all of the skills required to move up to GC, according to the study from Axiom and Wakefield Research.

International Arbitration Themes to Watch For in 2023

We may see a greater focus on diversity in tribunal appointments and an increase in claims being filed in the aftermath of Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine.

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