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Lateral Partner Moves in London

 

Click here for Partner Moves November - December 2017

 

Welcome to the latest round up of lateral partner moves in the legal market from Edwards Gibson where we look back at announced partner-level recruitment activity in London over the past two months and give you a ‘who’s moved where’ update.

 

This edition concludes our Lateral Partner Moves for 2017 and we have included some facts and figures below comparing the year’s partner-level recruitment activity with that of 2016.

 

A summary of 2017

 

2017 saw a total of 493 announced lateral partner moves which, staggeringly, is exactly the same number as we recorded in 2016. By way of calibration, these figures were up more than a quarter on the 392 we recorded in 2015.

 

Both the 2017 and 2016 figures were elevated largely due to the distorting impact arising from the insolvent collapse of King & Wood Mallesons’ (KWM) European Verein. Indeed, the first two months of 2017, like the last two months of 2016, were dominated by announcements of KWM émigrés emerging at new homes. Nevertheless, throughout the year the number of recorded moves from KWM in 2017 was actually 42% lower than in 2016 because the bulk of lateral partner moves from KWM had already been announced in 2016.

 

Even without the distortion of KWM, the London lateral market appears to be experiencing record activity - stripping out KWM partners entirely from the 2016 and 2017 statistics, and comparing them to 2015, the number of moves was up by 12% and 18% respectively. Indeed, even disregarding the moves from KWM, 2017 saw the highest number of lateral moves since our records began in 2010. 

 

 

Top 5 recruiters of lateral partners in London in 2017

 

  1. Reed Smith - 13 partners (3 from KWM);
  2. Simmons & Simmons - 12 partners (3 from KWM);
  3. DAC Beachcroft - 11 partners (1 from KWM);
  4. Clyde & Co - 10 partners(0 from KWM);
  5. Fieldfisher & Bird & Bird - 9 partners each (Fieldfisher took 2 partners from KWM).

 

Other fun facts from 2017:

 

  • There were a total of 123 female partner moves (25% of the total);   
  • 19% of all the moves recorded (94 lawyers) moved from non-partner roles into partnership – the highest proportion we have ever recorded;
  • 2017 saw arch conservative blue-blood Slaughter and May make its first ever London lateral hire since its founding in 1889 (Daniel Schaffer from Herbert Smith Freehills who joined as head of Slaughter’s Pensions department).

 

November-December 2017

 

This bi-monthly round-up contains 60 lateral partner moves - 20% of which were in the insurance sector, buoyed, in part, by the pending closure of insurance heavy US law firm Sedgwick LLP (which is due to cease trading worldwide in January 2018). 

 

The most acquisitive firm in this edition, with 4 lateral hires, was DAC Beachcroft followed by Gibson Dunn & Crutcher, Clyde & Co, and Kennedys which nabbed 3 partners a-piece.

 

The single highest profile hire in this edition was almost certainly Kirkland & Ellis’ acquisition of Freshfields private equity star David Higgins on reportedly eye-watering compensation. Yet more evidence, if any was needed, of the buying power of elite US law firms over the UK’s magic circle.  

 

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you would like to discuss this article or any other aspect of the market in more depth.

 

Click here to see the lateral partner moves from November - December 2017

 
Many thanks,
 
The Edwards Gibson Team  
+ 44 (0) 207153 4903
 
 
 

 

 

Previous Issues:

 

 

Partner Moves September - October 2017

Partner Moves July - August 2017

Partner Moves May - June 2017

Partner Moves March - April 2017

Partner Moves January - February 2017

 

 

Partner Moves November - December 2016

Partner Moves September - October 2016 

Partner Moves July - August 2016 

Partner Moves May - June 2016

Partner Moves March - April 2016

Partner Moves January - February 2016

 

 

Partner Moves November - December 2015

Partner Moves September - October 2015

Partner Moves July - August 2015

Partner Moves May - June 2015

Partner Moves March - April 2015

Partner Moves January - February 2015

 

 

Partner Moves November - December 2014

Partner Moves September - October 2014

Partner Moves July - August 2014

Partner Moves May - June 2014

Partner Moves March - April 2014

Partner Moves January - February 2014

 

 

Partner Moves November - December 2013

Partner Moves Sep - Oct 2013

Partner Moves July - August 2013

Partner Moves May - June 2013 

Partner Moves March - April 2013

Partner Moves January - February 2013

 

 

Partner Moves November - December 2012

Partner Moves September - October 2012

Partner Moves July - August 2012

Partner Moves May - June 2012

Partner Moves March - April 2012

Partner Moves January - February 2012

 

 

Partner Moves November - December 2011

Partner Moves September - October 2011

Partner Moves July - August 2011

Partner Moves May - June 2011 

Partner Moves March - April 2011

Partner Moves January - February 2011

 

For further information, or to discuss current trends in lateral partner recruitment, please speak to one of the Edwards Gibson consultants.

 

 

 

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Articles by Scott Gibson

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