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BLP loses head of private equity Raymond McKeeve to Jones Day

With all eyes on Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP) the news that corporate finance partner and global head of private equity Raymond McKeeve has left to join US firm Jones Day’s London office could, in many ways, not have come at a worse time.

Acknowledged by Legal 500 as ‘a leading private equity specialist’ McKeeve advises many of the leading private equity houses, including Blackstone Private Equity, Darwin Private Equity and KKR.

McKeeve, who joined BLP in 2009 during a sustained period of intense lateral hiring by the firm was, alongside Graham White, a leading figure in Linklaters private equity team before joining Kirkland & Ellis in 2006. He joined BLP after a period working as an investment professional for property mogul Robert Tchenguiz.

At Jones Day he will be working with Adam Greaves, Jones Day’s UK private equity chief, who said he is ‘delighted to welcome a lawyer of Raymond’s calibre to our growing EMEA private equity and finance practice’. Partner-in-charge of London for Jones Day, John Phillips, added: ‘With Raymond’s wealth of experience advising the private equity community both in the UK and internationally, he will be an exceptional asset to our global private equity client base especially in this changing and increasingly complex deal environment.’

McKeeve’s departure from BLP comes after it emerged last month that lateral corporate and finance hires Patrick Somers and Andrew Bamber had both left the firm. BLP is also engaged in a redundancy consultation which saw it cut 102 jobs last month.

Financially the firm has reported a drop in revenues of 5% down to £233m, the worst financial performance of the top UK 25 firms. However it has remained tight lipped on its profits, with profit per equity partner understood to be down by at least 35% to £430,000.