Legal Business Blogs

Revolving doors: Linklaters makes bold US play as new year recruitment picks up

Defying its US strategy critics, Linklaters’ New York office began the week with the hire of a six-lawyer M&A team from Shearman & Sterling. Led by Legal 500 Hall of Famer for $1bn-plus M&A deals, George Casey, the team also includes partners Heiko Schiwek and Gregory Gewirtz.

Casey, who had been global managing partner at Shearman from 2018, joins Linklaters as its global co-chair of corporate. Key mandates for Casey include Celanese’s $11bn all-cash acquisition of most of DuPont’s mobility and materials business in 2022, and DuPont and Dow Chemical’s $130bn merger in 2015.

Schiwek will join as one of Linklaters global chemical sector leaders. He has experience advising on US domestic and cross-border M&A transactions, including public company acquisitions, carve-out sales, joint venture transactions, and strategic investments. Meanwhile, Gewirtz focuses on public and private M&A, including divestiture, minority investments, financial advisory assignments, carve-outs, and joint ventures.

Elsewhere, Norton Rose Fulbright has lost a further partner, with commercial litigator Radford Goodman leaving for Mishcon de Reya. Goodman’s practice focuses on contentious insolvency, banking and finance, civil fraud, enforcement of security, and international asset recovery. He has acted for the US trustee of Lehman Brothers on UK litigation concerning the ownership of securities and advised the provisional liquidators of Rafidain Bank.

Meanwhile, Akin has hired London financial restructuring partner Jacqueline Ingram. Ingram moves from Milbank, and was previously at Cadwalader. Her clients include distressed investors, corporates, CLOs, and credit committees. Ingram specialises in downside protection, developing structures focused on maximising recoveries and preserving value. She also has experience advising on special situations financings and direct lending.

Fieldfisher has hired a medical negligence team from Irwin Mitchell, including partners Ian Christian, Shivi Nathan, and senior associate Rachel Morgan. The team specialises in high-value birth injury, neonatal claims, and maternal death cases. Alongside this Christian runs a sports injury practice where he advises elite athletes on substandard medical treatment claims.

Speaking to Legal Business, Christian said: ‘We were attracted by the firm’s fantastic reputation and the growth in its PI department really stood out. It was hugely appealing to see a firm progressing in that direction. We feel we sit very well within the firm’s culture. From a client care perspective, Fieldfisher has a fantastic reputation in our sector.’

King & Spalding has bolstered its UK employment offering with the appointment of Tessa Cranfield to its global human capital and compliance practice. Cranfield moves from Seyfarth Shaw. She advises both public and private clients on the full life cycle of UK and international employment law issues and has a particular geographic focus on Europe, the Middle East and Asia.

Elsewhere, Eversheds Sutherland has appointed Claire Gregory as a partner in its environmental health and safety team. Gregory moves from Mills & Reeve, where she was formerly head of its environment practice. Covering both contentious and non-contentious issues she has experience advising on contaminated land and brownfield site development, climate change and sustainability, environmental permitting, waste regulation, producer responsibility, water pollution and statutory nuisance.

‘Eversheds is a huge global firm, and it gives me a global platform to grow the environmental practice. The client base is really impressive, and I’ve transitioned a few clients over as well. The ESG offering is already very well developed and I’m looking to be part of the “E” side of things. One of my key aims is to build a bespoke environmental litigation practice as well as building on the advisory practice,’ Gregory explained.

HFW has recruited partner David Savage to its sanctions and regulatory investigations practice. Savage was previously head of financial crime at Stewarts. He specialises in international sanctions, internal and regulatory investigations into corporate and individual criminal and regulatory wrongdoing and general financial crime.

‘The sanctions landscape is getting increasingly convoluted, so I wanted to move to a platform where my sanctions expertise could be properly utilised to help clients both domestically and internationally. Ten years ago, sanctions was seen as a niche area of law and now anyone with an international footprint has an eye on the sanctions ball,’ Savage said.

Discussing his ambitions for the practice Daniel Martin, lead sanctions partner at HFW said: ‘The team has been incredibly busy over the last five months, there isn’t really a client in our little black book that isn’t impacted by sanctions at the moment. We are increasingly seeing regulators with a real appetite to enforce, and clients need that prompt strategic advice that people like us are well equipped to deliver.’

Finally, Kingsley Napley has bolstered its public law offering with the addition of two senior government lawyers. Natalie Cohen moves from the Government Legal Department, where she oversaw litigation in departments including the Treasury, the Ministry of Justice, the Department for Education, and the Department for Culture, Media and Sport. She is joined by Harry Carter, Lord Carter of Haslemere CB, who was general counsel at 10 Downing Street from 2016 to 2023. He has held senior roles at the Home Office and at the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office.