Legal Business Blogs

Revolving doors: European hires as HSF recruits in Germany and Bird & Bird focuses on Denmark while Ogier hires from Kirkland

King & Wood Mallesons real estate team hire from Eversheds may have made the headlines last week, but there were plenty of notable hires elsewhere. Herbert Smith Freehills (HSF) bolstered its Frankfurt office which it launched in 2013 with a finance partner from K&L Gates while Bird & Bird welcomed a new partner in Denmark and Ogier added to its dispute resolution team in the Cayman Islands with a hire from Kirkland & Ellis’ London office.

Julia Mueller joined HSF’s Frankfurt office as its ninth lateral since opening in the city in April 2013. She is dual qualified in English and German law and specialises in corporate, leveraged and acquisition finance. Before joining K&L Gates in May 2012 she had worked at White & Case, helping to establish its acquisition finance group in Germany and before then was at Allen & Overy.

Ralf Thaeter, HSF’s German head, said: ‘Germany is a very important market for the firm and in Julia we have recruited someone with the reputation, quality and experience that will enable us to build the high quality finance practice we need to continue to compete for high value cross-border and domestic transactional work.’

Also in Europe, Bird & Bird boosted its corporate and M&A practice in Denmark, with the hire of Morton Brehm Jensen from Delacour, who specialises in company and tax law.

Meanwhile, Ogier has appointed Kirkland & Ellis’ Ulrich Payne as a partner in its Cayman Islands dispute resolution team. Payne, who also previously worked at Simmons & Simmons and Hogan Llovells, joins from Kirkland’s London office. His background is in international disputes, usually with a financial aspect, and has worked in the UK, France, Germany and Belgium, and has advised on disputes in Russia, the Middle East and the US.

Payne has joined Ogier’s Cayman Islands team which is led by partner Rachael Reynolds. Reynolds said: ‘Ulrich is a great addition to the team. His practice as a partner at Kirkland & Ellis focused on complex international financial disputes and arbitration, and he has many years’ experience advising banks and other financial institutions, accountants and high net worth individuals on complex financial products and transactional issues. The Cayman Dispute Resolution team is in an expansion phase and Ulrich’s appointment further strengthens our offering, particularly in the area of complex financial services litigation.’

Meanwhile at home, DAC Beachcroft bolstered its professional liability team in Bristol, while Leigh Day boosted its Manchester team with a hire from Irwin Mitchell.

Pensions specialist Rebecca Smith joins DAC from RPC, where she was a legal director, prior to that she was a partner with CMS Cameron McKenna. Smith primarily acts for pension trustees and administrators, benefit consultants and actuaries, and will be based in Bristol.

Further north, claimant law firm Leigh Day has appointed industrial diseases partner Helen Ashton to its Manchester team. Aston joins from Irwin Mitchell’s London office where she has more than 15-years’ experience.