Legal Business

Corporate losses continue for Freshfields as Latham makes public M&A play in London

Kirkland & Ellis topped M&A rankings for Europe last year, bringing in a total of $224.2bn in deals, while Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer came in second at $221.7bn. Little wonder then that rival Latham & Watkins has targeted Freshfields for its most significant London lateral hire in some time, bringing in public M&A rising star Sam Newhouse.

It is inevitable that public M&A work in London – long-considered the preserve of the Magic Circle – has become the latest hunting ground for ambitious US players as an alternative to private equity and funds-driven corporate work. White & Case is well-established in the area and Weil, Gotshal & Manges has made no secret of its desire to find talented company for veteran Mike Francies, as it did with the hire of David Avery-Gee from Linklaters last year.