Legal Business Blogs

Building a ‘global oil and gas practice’: Latham & Watkins hires HSF energy partner in London

Latham & Watkins has continued its hiring spree in London with the hire of Herbert Smith Freehills‘ energy partner Simon Tysoe.

Tysoe, who joined HSF as a trainee in 2000 and made partner a decade later, becomes Latham’s 70th partner in London and the firm’s first hire in the City this calendar year. It is the second time the US firm has poached a partner from HSF after having attracted Simon Bushell to spearhead its London litigation push in 2013.

Tysoe specialises in cross-border M&A in the oil and gas sector and counts BG Group, BP and Chevron among his biggest clients. His hire furthers Latham’s push in the African energy space, with Tysoe having worked on acquisitions in Tanzania and Namibia. The firm secured the hire of the Clifford Chance’s (CC’s) Africa practice co-head Kem Ihenacho at the end of 2012 as part of a prolonged raid on CC’s private equity practice, which last month resulted in the hire of that group’s co-head Oliver Felsenstein in Frankfurt.

Nick Cline (pictured), Latham’s London managing partner, said: ‘The investment we’ve made in our London corporate department, combined with our global strength in the energy and natural resources sector, makes Simon an exciting addition to our London office. Not only is he a highly regarded oil and gas practitioner, but he has significant experience in the African market that further enhances our credentials in the region.’

Michael Darden, global chair of the oil and gas transactions practice at Latham, labelled Tysoe’s arrival ‘another important step in building a market leading and truly global oil and gas practice’ following the opening its Houston office in 2010.

Latham, which had just 53 partners in London in 2010, hired 10 partners in London last year and has prioritised further growth in the City. The office has become a regional hub for the firm which last month announced plans to open a business service centre in Manchester, as it seeks to provide around the clock IT and accounting support in Europe.

For more analysis on Latham’s global ambitions see: The firm most likely – can anything halt Latham’s global rise?