DLA Piper has appointed corporate partner Tom Heylen as London managing partner, taking over from Lord Tim Clement Jones, who will continue to work in his government affairs role and support the firm on Brexit-related issues.
Heylen, who has been an elected board member for four years, will begin his new role in January.
Sandra Wallace, UK managing partner at DLA Piper said: ‘Lord Clement Jones has been instrumental in shaping the London to office into what we see today. Over the last six years he has driven the external face of DLA Piper in the City with vigour and we are immensely grateful for his contribution both as London Managing Partner and for his government affairs and parliamentary acumen.’
Heylen added: ‘My primary focus will be promoting collaboration and team work, not only within the London office but between London and the rest of the world. We must ensure that we continuously improve the level of service we give our clients to help them achieve their business aims. Recruiting and developing talent and promoting diversity will be a crucial part of this.’
Heylen, who has experience in M&A and private equity work, acts for clients including Aegis Group plc, JLL, Lend Lease and Sun Capital.
Prior to joining DLA Piper, Helyen spent five years with the Health and Safety Executive; part of which was spent in a policy unit in Whitehall leading government policy on OP pesticides. This involved, amongst other things, preparing responses to parliamentary questions and briefing Ministers of State.
In May, DLA appointed Webber Wentzel corporate partner Johannes Gouws as South Africa managing partner to lead the firm’s push in the country after it launched its first African offices at the end of last year in Casablanca and Johannesburg.