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‘Second major addition to the European disputes practice in as many months’: Skadden hires Dechert’s London arbitration head

US firm Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom has enhanced its respected disputes practice having today (18 November) announced the hire of Dechert’s London arbitration head, Daniel Gal.

Led by global co-heads Karyl Nairn QC and David Kavanagh, Skadden’s City litigation and arbitration team is ranked tier one by the Legal 500, and is currently advising on heavyweight cases including South Sudan’s $1bn International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes arbitration proceedings over the ownership of oil field interests; and United Capital Partners Group on parallel arbitration and multijurisdictional litigation proceedings relating to interests in VKontakte, Russia’s largest social online networking service.

Gal, who joined from the now-defunct Dewey & LeBoeuf in 2008, previously led Dechert’s London international arbitration practice and is experienced in multi-jurisdictional disputes in growth markets, including the Middle East, Russia, Turkey and Latin America. He has represented companies in sectors such as telecommunications, mining, energy, construction, technology, banking and finance.

‘Daniel is a fantastic lawyer with first-class experience in investment treaty and commercial arbitration, as well as complex multi-jurisdictional litigation,’ Nairn said. ‘He will add further depth to our ability to advise clients in the most challenging litigation and arbitration matters.’

Skadden’s London office head Pranav Trivedi added: ‘Daniel is our second major addition to the European disputes practice in as many months, having been joined by partner Anke Sessler in Frankfurt. We very much look forward to welcoming him to the firm.’

Last week Legal Business revealed that Berwin Leighton Paisner and Olswang would lose their arbitration chiefs, namely Nicholas Fletcher QC and Andrew Aglionby, who are both set to leave for the bar. US firm Boies Schiller, meanwhile, in early September confirmed it was hiring long-serving partner Wendy Miles from Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr to kick start a London arbitration practice.