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DLA Piper pushes finance credentials with senior hires from Slaughters and Baker Mac

DLA Piper has made a major finance play in the City with the hire of former Slaughter and May partner Mark Dwyer and Baker & McKenzie structured finance veteran Vincent Keaveny.

Dwyer, regarded as one of Slaughter and May’s most prominent finance partners, left the firm after 20 years. A partner since 2005, he headed up Slaughters’ derivatives practice before retiring from the firm on 31 October.

He becomes one of just a handful of Slaughters partners to have moved to another major law firm, with Graham Iversen’s move to Greenberg Traurig Maher in 2014 and Richard Carson’s transfer to Taylor Wessing in 2012 two rare examples.

DLA’s latest recruit has a broad finance practice which, in addition to derivatives and capital markets, includes investment grade and leveraged financings. He counts 20 of the current FTSE 350 companies as clients.

Dwyer has already started at DLA and is to be joined this month by Bakers’ finance partner Keaveny. A former head of structured capital markets, Keaveny leaves Bakers after 10 years as a partner. He joined the US-based law firm as part of a successful four-partner lateral hire from Norton Rose in 2005 alongside Jonathan Walsh, Simon Porter, Bruce Somer. Walsh is Bakers’ current head of structured capital markets.

Keaveny, who counts German car manufacturer Volkswagen as a client, handles securitisation, structured finance and derivatives mandates.

The arrivals come as part of a global finance push by DLA. Banking and financial services was picked as one of the firm’s seven sector pillars earlier this year when DLA launched a condensed sector strategy. The firm appointed London-based Philip Butler as co-head of its global banking group as part of its sector overhaul in September to work alongside Frankfurt-based Frank Schwem, who was appointed in the summer.

DLA global co-chair of finance and projects Charles Morrison said: ‘Vincent and Mark are both very well-known and highly-regarded finance lawyers with international mind-sets. We are committed to strengthening our finance teams in all the world’s major money markets and are delighted to welcome lawyers of Vincent and Mark’s calibre to the group.’

The firm’s UK head of finance Martin Bartlam added that the hires ‘reflect the repositioning of the firm as a key player in global financial markets’.