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Revolving doors: Shearman adds three in Europe as Squire brings in Birmingham corporate lead

As summer holiday season kicked in amid a quieter lateral market, Shearman & Sterling dominated this week, with the Wall Street stalwart announcing three partner hires across its European offices.

In London, the firm enlisted project development and finance partner Julia Derrick. A specialist in M&A and commercial contracts in the oil and gas sector, Derrick spent her entire career at Ashurst before making the move.

David Beveridge, senior partner of Shearman, said: ‘Julia’s deep expertise in the energy sector, particularly across oil & gas, augments our market-leading capabilities in this area. Her practice highly complements our business and client base, and her appointment is indicative of our commitment to growing our London offering.

‘Julia’s addition is part of our ongoing strategy to align with market opportunities with the greatest potential for the firm, reinforcing our position as a global elite law firm.’

Moreover, the firm hired M&A and private equity partner Michael Mountain into its City group. Mountain, who joined from White & Case where he had niches in alternative capital providers and special situations, has a broad range of experience which includes M&A, private equity and joint ventures.

Commenting on his move, Mountain said: ‘I am thrilled to be joining a firm with such a strong global platform at a time when there is significant momentum in the London M&A practice and corporate offering more broadly. My practice sits at the intersection of corporate, restructuring and private credit, and I look forward to continuing the expansion of Shearman & Sterling’s capabilities in these areas with clients deploying flexible investment strategies.’

On the continent, Shearman also added to its German offering. Florian Ziegler has joined the finance team as a partner and will split his time between the Munich and Frankfurt offices. Also arriving from White & Case, Ziegler specialises in debt finance including leveraged acquisition finance and investment grade loans.

Elsewhere, at Irwin Mitchell, Marcus Collins joined the City IP group. Previously a senior associate at White & Case, Collins joins his new firm as a partner and will focus on international brand protection, trademark prosecution and IP litigation.

Finally in Birmingham, Squire Patton Boggs made a marquee addition to its corporate practice, as Tom Durrant arrived from Gateley. National head of corporate at his previous firm, Durrant will lead the Birmingham corporate practice and focus on M&A and private equity work.

Speaking to Legal Business, European managing partner Jonathan Jones explained the rationale behind the addition and plans for the Birmingham office: They [the Birmingham office] had a really, really good year last year and the year before that. What we are trying to do is to position the office in a similar way to the way that the other offices around the globe are positioned, which is led by corporate and within that, private equity and disputes.

‘We spent quite a long time trying to find the right person to bring into the office to lead that push that we want to make on private equity and corporate generally in the Midlands market. In Tom, we think we found exactly the right person to do that. He’s coming in with a mandate to grow the size of that team, both in terms of partner and associate numbers, and to make corporate a significantly bigger contributor to that office than it is at the moment.’