Legal Business Blogs

Revolving doors: K&L Gates opens in Luxembourg as firms go global for partner hires

In the latest round of lateral partner appointments, K&L Gates established a new base in Luxembourg while firms went worldwide for their strategic hires.

K&L Gates combined with Luxembourg firm Volckrick & Associates, handing the firm its eighth European branch and bringing the network worldwide up to 46 offices.

Partner Mathieu Volckrick will be joining K&L Gates via the combination, providing expertise in areas including asset management, investment funds, real estate and private equity.

Global managing partner Jim Segerdahl described Luxembourg as ‘a critical centre for financial services’ and added: ‘Our office is an important link for the firm’s offices and clients throughout Europe, as well as across our global platform. This initiative is another step in the firm’s client-centered growth focusing on key practices, industries, and markets.’

Also in Luxembourg, Simmons & Simmons has expanded its investment funds capabilities with the appointment of partner Pieter Leguit. Previously a partner at Loyens & Loeff, Leguit regularly acts as lead counsel to fund managers in the formation of alternative investment funds, particularly in private equity and real estate.

Leguit commented: ‘The investment funds business is very much a cross-border affair, and I am convinced that clients will benefit greatly from the combined expertise that the strong investment funds practices of the various Simmons offices throughout Europe and beyond have to offer.’

In New York, Lloyd Harmetz has joined Ashurst as a partner from Morrison & Foerster. Joining up with the firm’s global markets practice, Harmetz brings more than 15 years’ partner-level experience in assisting with securities offerings by financial institutions, including grade securities and structured products linked to equities, commodities, interest rates and other underlying assets.

Mike Logie, head of global markets for Ashurst in the UK and US, said: ‘As well as his structured products capabilities, Lloyd is also highly experienced in broader US debt capital markets, which will also be critical in supporting our global offering.’

Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan has added its latest litigation partner in London, hiring collective action specialist Ravi Nayer from Brown Rudnick. Acting for UK institutions such as pension funds, asset managers and insurers, Nayer has designed joint defence and novel litigation cooperation agreements in some of the UK’s biggest class actions, including the high profile £4bn RBS rights issue litigation.

Nayer commented on his move: ‘Like many of my peers, I have admired Quinn Emanuel from afar for some years. It is synonymous with innovation in litigation, technical expertise and unparalleled commitment to the cause of its clients. I feel privileged to be part of the next phase of its remarkable growth and ambitions in London.’

EY has lured ex-Akin Gump partner Stuart Sinclair to its tax practice, where he will build out the financial services credit fund and restructuring team. Sinclair has assisted some of the largest global credit funds on fund formations and supported the structuring of numerous complex cross-border transactions.

Sinclair said: ‘EY’s ambitions are strong, which matches the market demand, notably in the credit fund space, where firms are reporting growth, while facing legislative change headwinds.’

Eversheds Sutherland has boosted its Edinburgh employment team by hiring partner Euan Smith from Pinsent Masons. A seasoned adviser with over 20 years’ employment experience, Smith has a broad background covering immigration work, internal investigations and employment tribunal matters.  He also has an energy focus within his practice, advising oil and gas, nuclear and renewable energy clients on their transitions to net zero.

Stratford-upon-Avon firm Lodders has made a significant hire in its Birmingham environmental practice, appointing partner Lee McBride, formerly head of environmental law at Gowling WLG in Birmingham. In his 20 year stint as a partner at Gowling, McBride specialised in the real estate and environmental law aspects of large M&A transactions.  McBride is cited as a leading individual in The Legal 500’s environment rankings.

Mark Miller, head of Lodders’ real estate team, said: ‘Environmental law covers a wide area, but Lee is one of only a small number of legal practitioners who can claim to have a real expertise in this field. There is a growing need and demand for advice in this complex, highly specialised area of the law, especially from organisations looking to develop brownfield and brownland sites that will require remediation before future development.’

And in Australia, Clyde & Co re-hired insurance partner Tim Searle in Perth from national firm Wotton + Kearney, bringing with him a team of eight other insurance lawyers. He is experienced in litigation, arbitration and mediation across a range of sectors including construction, energy and professional services. Searle had previously been a senior associate and later a partner at Clyde between 2012 and 2019.