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US promotions round: Shearman & Sterling focuses on finance and arbitration with London duo

Mirroring last year, Shearman & Sterling has elected two London associates to partner as part of its promotion round which has seen thirteen made up in total.

The New York-headquartered firm moved to promote investment funds lawyer John Adams and arbitration specialist Alexander Uff in the City. Thirteen lawyers were promoted to partner globally, with the bulk of those made up based in New York and Washington, DC. After those cities the focus was on London and Hong Kong with their status as financial and arbitration hubs, as the firm moved to boost its disputes and finance practices.

Nick Buckworth (pictured), head of Shearman & Sterling in London, told Legal Business: ‘We’re a firm that is investing in our talent. The door to equity is not shut in our firm, so there’s a good career path, but at the same time we are being increasingly careful about promoting associates to partner as we focus on the quality of our partnership. We need people like John and Alexander to drive us forward into next generation.’

Adams’ practice bolts into the firm’s growing private equity presence, fuelled by the arrival of Mark Soundy and Sarah Priestley from Weil, Gotshal & Manges last year and the recent addition of Ben Rodham from Addleshaw Goddard.

Uff’s promotion, alongside that of fellow arbitration specialist Jennifer Younan in Paris, strengthens a London team that has traditionally been weaker than its continental cousin given the presence of practice head Emmanuel Gaillard in the French capital. The London office has bulked up its arbitration team in the last 12 months and now houses around 12 lawyers. Buckworth believes the firm has a ‘huge opportunity’ to harness the link between the office’s energy and arbitration teams and Uff has plugged into that sector.

On the round as a whole, Creighton Condon, Shearman & Sterling’s senior partner, said: ‘Each of our new partners has demonstrated a commitment to our ‘clients-first’ principles and an outstanding ability to advise clients on complex legal and business issues. We know they will make important contributions to the success of our clients and our firm in the years to come.’