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Hiring spree continues as Skadden takes Freshfields non-contentious insurance head

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom has continued its recent City hiring spree, recruiting Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer’s non-contentious insurance practice head Robert Stirling as a corporate partner.

The hire comes as the US firm looks to boost its cross-border insurance transaction capabilities, particularly its offering on inbound and outbound insurance investment in Europe.

Stirling was most recently a partner in Freshfields’ financial institutions group, where he headed the non-contentious insurance practice. His focus is on insurance and asset management transactions and, more broadly, the regulatory related to transactional work in the insurance sector. He advises on takeovers, private equity investments, share offerings, asset disposals and regulatory matters.

Recent deals at Freshfields include advising Pearl Group on its acquisition by Liberty International Holdings for just under £1bn, and its subsequent premium listing as Phoenix Group Holdings on the London Stock Exchange; and representing Rothesay Life on its £1.9bn insurance of RSA’s pension liabilities.

‘Clients are increasingly interested in sophisticated insurance-related expertise in Europe,’ said Skadden’s City head Pranav Trivedi. ‘Robert’s outstanding reputation and breadth of experience will complement our existing capabilities. His hire reflects the firm’s strategy to build out and leverage off of our key practice areas in offices around the globe.’

Todd Freed, co-head of Skadden’s global financial institutions group, said: ‘Robert’s deep insurance industry knowledge and cross-border experience will be of great assistance to our clients, particularly those seeking inbound and outbound insurance opportunities in Europe and those preparing for the implementation of Solvency II.’

Stirling, who said Skadden’s platform is the ‘perfect match’, will be based in London and will be part of the firm’s insurance group, which sits within its global financial institutions practice.

This latest hire follows Skadden’s recent recruit of Dechert’s London arbitration head Daniel Gal in November as the firm enhanced its European disputes practice.