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Revolving Doors: Ashurst makes key energy hire in New York as Gibson Dunn and Squire Sanders expand in London

Ashurst this week announced the hire of Allen & Overy (A&O) energy partner Charles Williams in a bid to boost its New York energy, resources and infrastructure practice.

The move strengthens the firm’s position within the US public-private partnership (PPP) space – dubbed P3 in the US – an area Williams focussed on at A&O. He brings with him experience of representing the public sector, sponsors and lenders within the transportation sector and advising on renewables projects in the North, Central and South America.

Head of Ashurst’s energy, resources and infrastructure team in the Americas, Jason Radford, said: ‘Combining Ashurst’s credentials as a leading international firm in the P3 and renewables field with our US public finance capability provides us with a very strong platform for our US practice. Charles has an excellent reputation as a leading practitioner in this market and his appointment is a further significant boost to our offering.

‘The US has the potential to become one of the world’s largest PPP and renewables markets and we are confident that the addition of Charles to our team will allow us to capitalise on the significant opportunities in these sectors.’

Radford transferred to New York in September 2011 to build a platform with the firm’s US partners within the transport sector. Provided the US PPP market continues to grow as well as Ashurst’s market share, Radford aims to expand the team further over the next year to broaden its client offering.

Williams added: ‘To date the US P3 market has been dominated by transportation projects but increasingly we are seeing other sectors develop, including water/waste water and social infrastructure.’

Elsewhere, Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher has hired international arbitration partner Penny Madden in London. Madden has been a partner at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom’s in London since 2007, prior to which she practiced at Clifford Chance and Shearman & Sterling.

Gibson Dunn’s senior partner in the dispute resolution group, Philip Rocher, said: ‘In addition to her international arbitration practice, Penny has significant regulatory and investigations experience. These areas have been a significant driver of our recent growth, and Penny will add to our ability to meet our clients’ needs.’

In a further high profile London move, Addleshaw Goddard’s head of structured finance Mark Thomas has joined Squire Sanders’ financial services practice group (FSPG) in London. The hire is the fifth in a series of senior appointments to Squires growing financial services practice in the past 10 months.

Jim Barresi, partner and global leader of the FSPG said: ‘Mark’s skills and experience are increasingly important to minimizing the cost of capital in the wake of regulatory reform. His expertise complements our existing practice in asset-based lending and asset finance, capital markets and banking regulation and will expand our ability to provide in Europe some of the services we provide clients in the US.’