Legal Business Blogs

Changing of the guard: DLA Piper elects next managing partner

DLA Piper has today (23 February) announced the election of Charles Severs as its next managing partner. His tenure will begin on 1 January 2025.

Severs moved to DLA Piper as a partner in 2003 from Herbert Smith Freehills.  A Legal 500 Hall of Famer for M&A: Lower Mid-Market Deals, Severs has an impressive client book including John Menzies, Symphony Technology, Science Group, Elekta, Hexcel, Puretech and Keller Group.

He has held several leadership roles at the firm, including international group head of corporate, managing director for groups, and managing director for Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa. He has been a member of the firm’s executive management team for 10 years and is an executive sponsor for graduate recruitment and the firm’s client listening program.

Simon Levine, who has held the position of international managing partner and global co-CEO for the past ten years, will take up the role of strategic innovation partner, leading DLA Piper’s innovation and strategic transformation programme. Levine was re-elected to managing partner in 2018 in an uncontested election following his first term, where he took over from Sir Nigel Knowles in 2015.

Since 2018, the firm’s revenue has increased by 40%, and it recorded a revenue of $3.69bn in 2023.

Levine will help Severs prepare for the new role over the next 10 months while continuing in his position as managing partner until the end of his term on the 31 December 2024.

‘Charles has been an integral part of my management team for the past decade, and it will be an honour to pass the baton of DLA Piper’s leadership over to him at the end of the year. Not only is Charles an outstanding lawyer, but his strength lies in his proven ability to lead and also to listen. I have every confidence that Charles is the right person to guide DLA Piper into a bright future,’ said Levine.

Commenting on his election, Severs said: ‘This is an incredibly proud moment for me. I have spent the vast majority of my career at DLA Piper and care passionately about this great firm and the fantastic people that make us who we are. Simon will be a tough act to follow, and I’m delighted that we will continue to benefit from his vision for innovation. We certainly have an exciting future ahead.’