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Revolving doors: Cooley, Pannone, DWF and K&L Gates all bolster UK numbers

Last week saw a quartet of US and UK firms, namely Cooley, Pannone Corporate, DWF and K&L Gates, all make lateral hires in the areas of tax, regulatory, real estate, and finance.

Continuing on its upward trajectory since its January launch in the City was Cooley which, on Friday (15 May), announced it will enhance its London business and finance practice with the hire of London-based tax partner Natasha Kaye from Olswang.

Kaye advises on both domestic and international tax issues for corporate, real estate, outsourcing and IP transactions and planning. She has a particular focus on private equity deals advising both institutions and management teams, as well as advising more generally on M&A, reorganizations, joint ventures and corporate restructurings.

Cooley’s London managing partner Justin Stock said: ‘Natasha is a highly-respected tax lawyer with a broad skillset across all areas of complex corporate tax work who will prove incredibly valuable to our corporate client base active in the UK.’

It follows a flurry of partner hires by the US firm which recently recruited Olswang’s longstanding corporate partner Stephen Rosen, as well as Reed Smith life sciences partner duo John Wilkinson and Nicola Maguire in March.

Just over a year after deciding against joining Slater & Gordon following its acquisition of Pannone’s consumer law business, Manchester-based Pannone Corporate is in expansion mode and has appointed two partners, Tristan Meears-White and Dermot Preston, from DWF and Gateley respectively.

Meears-White has joined as head of regulatory compliance. He advises on regulatory and compliance issues including anti-trust, competition, bribery and corruption, and health and safety law. Preston has joined the insolvency and corporate recovery team and advises on non-contentious insolvency issues including advising banks, asset based lenders, companies and directors.

Commenting on the partner hires, Pannone Corporate managing partner Paul Jonson said: ‘This investment in our regulatory and compliance, and insolvency and corporate restructuring practices further enhances our offering to the firm’s growing client base of corporate and commercial clients who want a quality service delivered in a clear, unstuffy way at sensible rates.’

Meanwhile, DWF invested in its Scottish team with the appointment of real estate partner Moray Thomson in Glasgow. Joining from MacRoberts, where he served as head of planning, Thomson is tasked with increasing the ‘scale and visibility of DWF’s planning capability in Scotland and nationally’. Thomson is specialised in onshore wind and grid connections and reinforcements, which DWF hopes will increase its contentious planning and consenting capability. His recent work in this area includes the consent for the various parts of the South West Scotland Renewables Connection project and the re-powering of the Cockenzie Power Station.

Lastly, K&L Gates enhanced its City investment management practice with the recruit of Berwin Leighton Paisner partner Jacob Ghanty. Ghanty advises asset managers, insurers, banks, payment institutions, and intermediaries about financial regulation, investment funds, insurance/reinsurance, and structured debt and capital markets.

Tony Griffiths, administrative partner of K&L Gates’ London office said: ‘Jacob joins a growing UK investment management team. His arrival further strengthens the advisory side of our practice, where we have seen significant client demand from alternative capital providers for guidance on the myriad of existing and new financial services regulations.’

Ghanty constitutes the second new partner addition to K&L Gates in London this year, following the March arrival of intellectual property partner Arthur Artinian from Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer.