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Linklaters mourns death of high-profile M&A partner Iain Wagstaff after cycling accident

Linklaters partner Iain Wagstaff, one of the firm’s most prominent deal lawyers, has died at the age of 44.

The City firm confirmed to Legal Business today (6 September) that Wagstaff passed away on the weekend of 31 August following a cycling accident. The corporate and private equity specialist, who was married with two children, was a well-known figure in Linklaters’ flagship corporate practice.

‘It is with enormous sadness that we can confirm the death of Iain Wagstaff, a partner, friend and admired colleague at the firm,’ commented senior partner Charlie Jacobs in a statement. ‘The firm’s thoughts are with Iain’s family as well as with his many friends at Linklaters and beyond the firm. Iain was an exceptional lawyer and a great friend to me and so many others. He will be very greatly missed.’

Wagstaff spent his career in private practice at Linklaters, joining the Magic Circle firm as a trainee in 1999 after graduating in law at Nottingham University and attending Nottingham Law School. He was later seconded to Goldman Sachs in 2001 and Citigroup in 2004-05. He made partner at the Magic Circle firm in 2010 and established himself as one of its most productive names after acting for a string of Linklaters’ marquee plc and sponsor clients.

He was often cited as one of the next generation of leading corporate partners at the firm by colleagues and peers.

The list of clients Wagstaff acted for include retail group intu Properties, which he advised on the proposed £3.4bn takeover by rival Hammerson in 2017 and the potential offer by Brookfield, Peel and Olayan last year. He also represented Siemens in the £950m acquisition of Rolls-Royce’s energy gas turbines business and the £1.7bn acquisition of Invensys’s rail automation business; as well as Arcus Infrastructure on the £1.1bn sale of a 65% stake in Forth Ports to PSP. Wagstaff also acted on a number of substantial initial public offerings, including Just Eat and Investec.