Legal Business Blogs

Shearman invests in London as City promotions overtake New York

London provided the bulk of this year’s partner promotions at US law firm Shearman & Sterling, with more lawyers joining its partnership in the City than in the US.

In a notable increase on the size of its promotions round in the City last year, when Shearman made up two partners, the New York-based firm made promotions across its litigation, capital markets, finance, mergers and acquisitions and tax practices. Just four partners were made up in the US this year, all of whom are based in New York, compared to seven made up in 2014 in Manhattan and Washington DC. Globally, 12 lawyers made partner, one down on last year.

Korey Fevzi, who specialises in US financing such as high yield bonds and Term B Loans, was promoted in the City alongside capital markets counsel Marwa Elborai as the firm expands its finance capability in London. The pair have worked for the likes of Goldman Sachs, Barclays and Credit Suisse and have capitalised on the swing towards US-driven financing in Europe deals.

M&A lawyer Matthew Powell, litigator Susanna Charlwood and tax specialist Simon Letherman were also promoted in London. Charlwood, who joined from Slaughter and May in 2013, adds to Shearman’s well-established international arbitration team in London. She is one of four promotions in this practice, representing a third of the round, with Singapore-based Daryl Chew and Paris duo Maude Lebois and Mohamed Shelbaya also made up.

Shelbaya, who has a prominent reputation in North Africa, is expected to relocate to Egypt if Shearman succeeds with its plans to launch there.

Powell, who joined Shearman’s London arm three years ago from Linklaters, specialises in oil and gas M&A and was recently seconded to Iraq-focused oil producer Genel Energy.

Shearman has traditionally been one of heaviest investors in the City legal market, fielding the seventh-largest London practice for a foreign practice by lawyer count with 166 fee-earners, including 33 partners, according Legal Business’s 2015 Global London report. Shearman generated firm-wide revenues of $845m for the 2014 financial year, up 3% annually.

The firm also this year raised its salary for newly-qualified solicitors by £5,000 to take starting pay to £88,000.

Shearman & Sterling promotions in full:

Susanna Charlwood, London, litigation

Marwa Elborai, London, capital markets

Korey Fevzi, London, finance

Simon Letherman, London, tax

Matthew Powell, London, mergers & acquisitions

Richard Alsop, New York, capital markets

Jordan Altman, New York, mergers & acquisitions

Daniel Litowitz, New York, mergers & acquisitions

Ilir Mujalovic, New York, capital markets

Maude Lebois, Paris, international arbitration

Mohamed Shelbaya, Paris, international arbitration

Daryl Chew, Singapore, international arbitration

For more on US firms in London see the Global London debate, Tipping points