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Greenberg strengthens City restructuring practice in preparation for economic downturn

Greenberg Traurig has continued its London recruitment push, this time hiring from Baker McKenzie to strengthen its City restructuring practice as firms look to hedge against increasing economic uncertainty. Bakers’ co-head of global restructuring and insolvency Ian Jack has left the firm for Greenberg after more than two decades, bringing with him extensive experience in restructuring as well as banking and financial transactions.

The hire comes as many in the industry anticipate a demand for restructuring and insolvency lawyers amid the disruption caused by the coronavirus. Greenberg executive Chairman Richard Rosenbaum commented: ‘I have been around a long time, but all countries, businesses and law firms are no doubt facing an unprecedented period of disruption, change and challenges. We just concluded our strongest year on record by any measure, and began 2020 in the same manner, but we all know we are facing new challenges given the coronavirus, oil price wars, stock market gyrations, and the uncertainties stemming from all of those circumstances.’

During his time at Bakers, Jack spearheaded advising Deloitte on the £700m sale of the Gherkin building to Safra Group as well as advising on the steering committee of creditors in the restructuring of $16.7bn of financial indebtedness of the leading Kazakh bank. He also advised clients in connection with the €1.6bn project financing for the construction and operation of a tolled section of the Berlin to Moscow highway.

The move continues a purple patch of hires for Greenberg, after the firm made a double play last month, with former Mishcon de Reya partners Mohammed Khamisa QC and Masoud Zabeti both joining the firm’s London bench. Greenberg’s City office now has more than 85 lawyers, with growth in contentious practices high on the agenda for 2020.