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King & Spalding steps up aggressive City push with A&O partner hire

King & Spalding has recruited Allen & Overy’s former European head of US law, Thomas Jones, as its raid on Global 100 firms in London this year continues.

The US firm, which in the last year has hired capital markets partner Tom O’Neill from Linklaters as well as the head of BLP’s advocacy group, Stuart Isaacs QC, has added Jones as a partner to its City office. His arrival brings the firm’s City partner count up to 22, after making seven senior hires in 12 months.

A&O confirmed the departure of derivatives and structured finance partner Jones today (9 October) after 20 years at the Magic Circle firm, having joined as an associate from Cravath, Swaine & Moore’s London office in 1995.

Jones made partner at A&O in 2000, and subsequently spent five years in Hong Kong during the mid-2000s as US financing infiltrated the Asia markets. He returned to London in 2008 and served a stint as European head of the firm’s US law practice.

Jones’ hire continues a recent lateral hiring spree by King & Spalding’s City office, with Latham & Watkins’ former European vice chair of tax, Daniel Friel, and disputes partner Nick Cherryman from Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson, also joining the firm this year.

International expansion has not been restricted to London, with the firm taking a four-partner team from Ashurst in June to launch its second Asia office in Tokyo, led by the Ashurst Tokyo managing partner, John McClenahan.