Apathy and a multimillion-pound shortfall define beleaguered KWM Europe insolvency

Apathy and a multimillion-pound shortfall define beleaguered KWM Europe insolvency

Thomas Alan finds reality setting in for creditors and former partners more than two years on

‘My immediate thought was: “Can’t we just move on?” I can’t be bothered with it,’ says one former King & Wood Mallesons (KWM) Europe and Middle East partner when asked for their thoughts on the firm’s latest administration report. Indeed, it is hard not to share some of the sentiment. Two years after the collapse of KWM EUME, the saga continues to limp forward in a fashion considered onerous even by law firm insolvency standards. Continue reading “Apathy and a multimillion-pound shortfall define beleaguered KWM Europe insolvency”

‘No blueprint’: Looking back at Lehman’s wind-up

‘No blueprint’: Looking back at Lehman’s wind-up

Lehman Brothers International (Europe) (LBIE)’s 5,500 employees left the London office at 25 Bank Street on Friday 12 September 2008 expecting to return on Monday morning to their weekly routine. As did their colleagues in the rest of the world.

Not that life had been easy up to that point. Global financial turmoil had been going for around a year and Lehman had just posted a $3.9bn third-quarter loss amid the subprime mortgage crisis. Yet, the sense was that the bank founded in 1850 would be bought out by either Barclays or Bank of America, despite the US government’s resistance to bailing it out. Continue reading “‘No blueprint’: Looking back at Lehman’s wind-up”

Stars and stripes in their eyes – assessing the US ambitions of A&O and Freshfields

Stars and stripes in their eyes – assessing the US ambitions of A&O and Freshfields

Nathalie Tidman looks at the struggle for the City elite as US players dominate home and away

‘People like me, making the switch from the Magic Circle to a US firm – a Kirkland, a Latham, a White & Case – did so because being a powerhouse in the US is critical to becoming a truly global law firm.’ Continue reading “Stars and stripes in their eyes – assessing the US ambitions of A&O and Freshfields”

Mega-deals and convergence stoke M&A but subdued volumes and volatile conditions linger

Mega-deals and convergence stoke M&A but subdued volumes and volatile conditions linger

This time last year, a collective sigh of relief from City dealmakers was reverberating around the Square Mile as the M&A market regained momentum despite a backdrop of economic and political uncertainty. Since then, deal counsel have barely paused for breath, with many juggling multiple deals well into the parts of August in which even the most committed deal junkie would expect to be pretending not to check work emails on a sun lounger.

Such boom-time dynamics are borne out by the latest Mergermarket figures for H1 2018, which saw announced global M&A deals hit $1.94trn, its highest value since the financial crisis. Continue reading “Mega-deals and convergence stoke M&A but subdued volumes and volatile conditions linger”