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Alphas 2.0

A fresh look at the City’s outstanding female deal lawyers

Magic Circle in the US: Running to stand still

Magic Circle firms have spent decades trying to break into the US market, with limited success. With Allen & Overy’s announcement of its proposed merger with Shearman & Sterling, at last one of the group is making a truly bold play. A breakthrough or another false dawn?

The in-house debate: Time for a quick Chat(GPT)?

Legal Business and Pinsent Masons Vario gathered in-house counsel to discuss the future of their careers amid escalating technological advancement

Offshore report: Tempering against the tempest

The leading offshore firms are seizing opportunities in the face of economic and geopolitical reversals. Legal Business assesses the top ten firms and asks leaders if the winning streak can last

Risk management and professional indemnity survey 2023: Walking the talk

Once again, ESG dominates the agenda for those responsible for risk management at law firms. We speak to senior figures about the key findings of our annual report

Life During Law: Georgia Dawson

‘The industry is evolving rapidly. Even before the pandemic you could see change coming through the profession. The pandemic has really accelerated that.’

The Client Profile: Sebastian Goldsmith, Medigold Health

‘Being invited is diversity – being asked to dance is inclusion’: from investment fund law to general counsel, via the South American Cricket Championship

Women deal stars prove you can have it all – but don’t worry men, you are Kenough

Chatting with a male managing partner recently about – what else – the hire of Kirkland’s debt superstar Neel Sachdev into Paul Weiss in London, talk eventually turned to the Barbie movie (obviously).

Paul Weiss’ hire of Kirkland rock star is the shake-up we didn’t know we needed

‘Paul Weiss hasn’t got enough partners in London for doubles ping pong!’ scoffed a senior source at the beginning of August when it emerged that the Wall Street powerhouse had lost its City managing partner, Alvaro Membrillera, to Kirkland & Ellis.

Kirkland departures rack up as Paul Weiss makes major London and New York plays

August’s reputation as a slow month for lateral hires has been turned on its head in recent weeks, particularly considering the shock departure of debt finance rainmaker Neel Sachdev from Kirkland & Ellis.

Numbers unveiled: 2022/23 financial results show 8% average revenue growth

The annual flood of financial results has engulfed the market once again, with Legal Business 100 firms observing how the Magic Circle firms in particular have performed compared to City peers.

‘The investment opportunity of a lifetime’: could a booming infrastructure sector offer firms a route into high-value transactional work?

According to Dealogic, 2023 saw the lowest Q1 global deal volume and value since 2012, with just 9,400 deals worth almost $591bn.

The social mobility conundrum: a quantitative or qualitative approach?

Following Slaughter and May’s July announcement that it would be setting ambitious social mobility targets for 2033, Holly McKechnie spoke to Magic Circle peers to see how they are each approaching the issue

‘The raconteur’s raconteur par excellence’: Industry mourns loss of ESG luminary Paul Watchman

‘Have I told you my friend’s story about being a munchkin in The Wizard of Oz in Aberdeen in the 1980s? Phone me when you are bored.’ Such messages – as apparently apropos of nothing as they were impossible to ignore – were not uncommon from Professor Paul Quayle Watchman, former Freshfields partner and ESG guru who sadly passed away at the start of July.

The Last Word: Gender agenda

Following on from our Alphas 2.0 feature, we ask female deal stars to talk about the challenges they have faced and still plague the industry today