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Kirkland returns to Linklaters to hire UK competition head Riedel

Kirkland & Ellis has turned to Linklaters for the second time this year and taken another leading partner with the hire of UK competition chief Paula Riedel.

Quick on the heels of Linklaters’ real estate M&A head Matthew Elliott who joined Kirkland in February, Riedel becomes the third competition partner at the firm. There she will link up with Sarah Jordan and Shaun Goodman, who joined from now-defunct firm Howrey in early 2011.

Like Elliott, Riedel trained at Linklaters and her exit will be seen as a blow. She joined the Magic Circle firm as a trainee solicitor in 1994 and it didn’t take her long to become a partner, making the grade in 2003. She became London competition head in early 2014 and her exit will result in her predecessor, global competition head Michael Cutting, taking over her responsibilities until a replacement is found.

Riedel specialises in UK, European Commission and multi-national merger control and has built her practice around the mining, energy and financial services sectors. As well as Elliott, she will also link up with another Linklaters alumni, Stephen Lucas, who joined the firm in a big money move in May 2014.

Her departure follows a string of senior exits from Linklaters to US firms this year, with the firm’s global energy co-head Matthew Hagopian and partner Manzer Ijaz leaving for Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy also in February.

‘As one of the leading antitrust lawyers in Europe, we are delighted that Paula is joining our firm,’ said Jeffrey Hammes, chairman of Kirkland. ‘Her arrival will strengthen our successful global M&A antitrust practice.’