Legal Business Blogs

Latham lands Cahill City finance trio as Greenberg, McDermott and Cleary bolster London ranks

In the most notable London lateral move of recent weeks, Latham & Watkins bolstered its banking and finance practice with its hire of partners Jonathan Brownson, Joydeep Choudhuri, and Prue Criddle from New York banking heavyweight Cahill Gordon & Reindel’s City office.

Brownson, a Legal 500 Hall of Famer for acquisition finance, joined Cahill from pre-merger Allen & Overy in 2020 with fellow finance partner and Legal 500 high yield leading individual Jake Keaveny. Both Choudhuri and Criddle are also A&O alums: Choudhuri made partner at the firm in 2020 before moving to Cahill in April 2021, while Criddle left A&O as an associate to join Cahill as a partner in January 2021.

Brownson and Keaveny were crucial in developing Cahill’s then-nascent London finance practice. The departures of Brownson, Choudhuri, and Criddle raise questions about the future prospects for the practice, with the firm’s site listing only two banking and finance partners in the City: Keaveny, and Warren Newton, who also left A&O as a senior associate and joined Cahill as a partner in January 2021.

Elsewhere, Greenberg Traurig has strengthened its tax practice with the addition of Sophie Allen from Morrison Foerster. Allen joins Greenberg as chair of the firm’s London tax practice, bringing expertise in advising on the tax aspects of both domestic and cross-border PE and M&A transactions. Allen joined MoFo in 2020 after spending six years at EY. She previously worked at Kirkland & Ellis from 2004 to 2013.

MoFo also recently lost leveraged finance duo Chris Kandel and John Burge to McDermott Will & Emery, which is continuing to expand its presence in London. Kandel, one of the City’s most respected finance veterans, joined MoFo in 2019 from Latham, where he was global co-chair of the finance practice and co-head of the London bank finance practice. Burge, meanwhile, became a partner at MoFo in 2021 after joining as of counsel from Clifford Chance, where he was a senior associate until 2018.

Cleary has also strengthened its PE practice, hiring debt finance partner Alexander van der Gaag from Kirkland, where he spent four years as a partner after joining as an associate from Baker McKenzie in 2015. Van der Gaag brings deep experience advising PE firms and corporates on leveraged finance acquisitions, private credit, and syndicated lending, as well as infrastructure and real estate finance.

Dentons has hired Willkie Farr & Gallagher partner Laura Whyatt into its London competition practice. Whyatt brings nearly a decade of specialist competition litigation experience to the firm, including handling cartel and abuse of dominance cases before both the European Commission and the EU courts. Her previous experience includes work as a competition senior associate at Quinn Emanuel in London from 2017 to 2021, as an associate at Shearman & Sterling in Brussels from 2014 to 2017, and as a trainee at Mayer Brown in London from 2012 to 2014.

On the in-house front, energy tech company Enoda has appointed Aniela Foster-Turner as general counsel for UK and Europe. Foster will split her time between Edinburgh and London and will work as part of the company’s senior executive team. She joins from Gore Street Capital, where she was legal director.

Foster-Turner commented: ‘I am very excited about joining Enoda and being part of the team that delivers a transformative technology that is to play a crucial role in the energy transition.’