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Simpson Thacher makes rare lateral play with hire of Linklaters tax head

Traditionally one of the more conservative US acquirers of talent in the City, Simpson Thacher & Bartlett has bucked that trend with the hire of Yash Rupal from Linklaters.

The move sees Linklaters deprived of its City head of tax and is another reversal for the Magic Circle after Amy Mahon, Clifford Chance’s respected dealmaker, defected to Simpson Thacher in November 2018. Rupal becomes head of tax at Simpson Thacher following the switch.

Rupal made partner at Linklaters in 1996 and represents corporates, financial institutions, funds, asset managers and their executives on cross-border M&A, investment fund planning and tax planning. He acted as global head of tax from 2007 until 2011 and has most recently led the firm’s City tax practice.

The news of Rupal’s hire comes after Simpson Thacher last week posted a 14% increase in London revenue last year, rising from $176m to $200.6m, as well as the expansion of its office space in the City.  London revenue for the firm has grown consecutively year-on-year since 2010 when revenue stood at $52m.

The addition of Rupal means Simpson Thacher now has 23 partners in the City. Highlights in recent years have been significant growth in the funds and real estate private equity practices.

Jason Glover (pictured), managing partner at the firm’s London office, said: ‘Working in tandem with our US tax practice, the UK tax team will be available to support our clients in providing commercial, value-added advice in respect of UK and EU tax issues at a time when tax authorities are applying greater scrutiny to the activities of both institutions and individuals.’