Legal Business Blogs

Deutsche Bank names former Links veteran as new global law chief

Deutsche Bank has appointed a new legal head, handing its chief compliance officer and head of global governance Florian Drinhausen one of the most powerful general counsel roles in the cross-border legal market.

The internal appointment comes after it was announced that co-general counsel (GC) Christof von Dryander and Simon Dodds are to leave the bank respectively at the end of 2017 and 31 March 2018.

The 49-year-old Drinhausen, who pwreviously served as EMEA legal chief at Deutsche Bank, will remain responsible for Deutsche’s governance structures around the world.

Drinhausen was an associate at elite German independent Hengeler Mueller before joining Linklaters as a partner in 2001. He remained at the City giant for 13 years before joining Deutsche in 2014 as GC for Europe, Middle East and Africa. He then took over as the bank’s chief governance officer last year. Karl von Rohr, the bank’s chief administrative officer, said: ‘He is an excellent lawyer and very experienced manager who is very familiar with the bank and the challenges we are facing.’

Drinhausen takes on the top legal job at one of Europe’s elite banking groups and one of the most coveted global legal clients, with 150 lawyers in the UK alone.

Von Dryander and Dodds, both former partners of Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton, were appointed as co-GCs of Deutsche two years ago. Von Dryander joined as GC for Germany and Central and Eastern Europe as well as the asset and wealth management and private and business clients divisions globally. Dodds joined Deutsche Bank in 1999 as UK legal chief, assuming legal responsibility for Western Europe and becoming global head of compliance in 2010.

Drinhausen’s appointment comes as the bank earlier this year sowught to reposition itself after involvement in a number of high profile regulatory actions with the creation of a new anti-fraud, bribery and corruption team for the EMEA region. Led by regional head of anti-financial crime Thomas Altenbach, the European team sits outside the legal function and is composed of a director and three other individuals with experience in anti-fraud, bribery and corruption matters.

In January the bank finalised a $7.2bn settlement with US authorities over the mis-selling of residential mortgage securities before the 2008 financial crisis. Again in January, it emerged White & Case and Sullivan & Cromwell advised the bank as it was fined a total of £500m by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and the New York Department of Financial Services over money laundering claims.