Pinsent Masons has launched a Paris TMT practice with a six-strong team from Paris-based boutique technology firm Ichay & Mullenex Avocats (IMA).
Led by partners Diane Mullenex and Frédéric Ichay, along with Annabelle Richards who joins as a legal director, the team will bolster Pinsents' around 25-strong French base, which opened in September 2012 and includes 10 partners.
Since forming in 2004, IMA has focused on technology, telecoms, e-commerce transactions and in regulated online businesses, including gaming and gambling and is recommended in The Legal 500.
Here's one anecdote that didn't make it into this month's extended focus on Ashurst. Sometime soon after the firm had pulled back from its late-1990s dalliance with Clifford Chance (CC), the first of three public failed merger bids for the firm, at least one partner had second thoughts. An overture was made to the Magic Circle firm to enquire if the discussions were worth re-kindling. The response from CC: 'The window of opportunity opens... and then it closes'.
And there you have it. Flatfooted and left behind by a thrusting Magic Circle firm.
Following a six-month tender process the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills (BIS) has appointed Hogan Lovells to advise on the sale of the £40bn Student Loans Company (SLC) debt portfolio.
In July BIS invited tenders for legal advice on the monetisation of the SLC's loans portfolio, which is likely to take place either through a sale to the private sector or securitisation. Invited firms had until 23 August to submit their bids and BIS confirmed to Legal Business late on Friday 6 December that Hogan Lovells was 'recently' notified that it is the successful bidder.
Ashurst has lost a second senior partner in Germany as Nikolaus von Jacobs leaves to head up McDermott Will & Emery's Munich private equity practice, citing a growing interest among US private equity funds in European investment opportunities.
Von Jacobs, who previously headed Ashurst's local private equity team, specialises in venture capital, public and private M&A as well as private equity. One of his main clients is independent Luxembourg-based fund Palero Capital.