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.
In all, there was a total of 65 lateral partner moves announced in this round-up – 33% fewer than the same period last year and 14% fewer than the statistical average for the preceding five year period. This comes on the back of the 22% fall we reported in our last edition. Overall, in the first four months of 2018, the number of lateral partner moves in London is down 27% on 2017 – a drop only partially explained by the 2017 figures being artificially buoyed by the collapse of King & Wood Mallesons’ European verein.
Top partner recruiters in London March – April 2020
Of note in this edition
- A three partner move, including a former Head of Real Estate, from DLA Piper, linked to a much larger 50 lawyer ($100 million revenue) team move in the USA, launches a real estate offering by McDermott Will & Emery in London.
- No fewer than five partner hires – nearly 8% of all recorded moves - were in White Collar Crime with two firms: Macfarlanes, and US firm Greenberg Traurig, launching their European offerings with significant named partners.
- 20% of all recorded moves were laterals moving for partnership - with Kirkland & Ellis making three such acquisitions. Elsewhere, two partners moved from senior in-house roles into partnership.
Top partner recruiters in London March-April 2018:
|Kirkland & Ellis||3|
|McDermott Will & Emery||3|
Whilst the number of moves in 2018 is sharply down on the (admittedly record number) we saw last year, it is too soon to determine if this is part of a wider slowdown. Nevertheless, it is interesting to note that, so established has the trend for lateral hiring in London become, that even when hitherto ultra-conservative lateral hirers such as Allen & Overy and Macfarlanes nab two partners apiece, the lack of novelty means that it no longer invokes quite the same comment it once would.
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