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Revolving doors: Shoosmiths appoints five new partners as Burford and RPC make hires

The front door was spinning at Shoosmiths this week as it swooped for hires from three City firms, while Ashurst‘s exits continued, and Burford Capital and RPC Perform both recruited.

Shoosmiths’ recruitments hot up an otherwise quiet August with a spate of hires from Hogan Lovells, Charles Russell Speechlys, King & Wood Mallesons and a move for Iconix’s senior in-house counsel.

The UK firm hired Hogan Lovells corporate partner Amit Nayyar and senior real estate associate Ed John, who joins the firm as partner. Shoosmiths tapped Charles Russell for planning partner Tim Johnson, and added to the exits at King & Wood Mallesons by recruiting Angus Evers, who will join as the firm’s head of environment.

As well as grabbing a raft of new partners from the City, Shoosmiths added Richard Millington who joins from Iconix, the home of brands including Umbro, where he was VP international counsel. Millington will join Shoosmiths’ technology, media and commercial team in the firm’s Manchester office.

As the firm continues to struggle with a string of exits, Ashurst has lost a key member of its Africa team, with oil & gas and mining project partner Nicolas Bonnefoy leaving the firm to start his own practice. Bonnefoy has advised clients such as Mitsui & Co, oil company OMV Group and Sasol as well as Republic of Equatorial Guinea and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Bonnefoy is the latest in a wave of recent departures, including the firm’s CFO Brian Dunlop earlier this month.

While Burford Capital, the global litigation financing firm, has appointed former Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson head of competition and antitrust Craig Arnott as its new managing director. Arnott takes over after the sudden resignation of Nick Rowles-Davies.

Arnott will focus on the UK, Europe and Asia-Pacific. Burford chief executive Christopher Bogart said: ‘We’re very pleased to welcome Craig to Burford. He brings over 20 years of commercial law experience in multiple legal jurisdictions that will assist us in meeting the increasingly global demands of our clients.’

Finally, RPC’s general counsel consulting arm, RPC Perform, has hired Royal Bank of Scotland consultant Varun Srikumar in the latest addition to the team. RPC Perform was founded early in 2016, headed up by former T-Mobile GC and Huron Consulting legal managing director Julia Chain. Srikumar is the fifth new signing for the fledgling practice.