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Early 2014 saw Latham & Watkins’ London office announce its fifth partner hire in eight months. It marks the third hire to the UK private equity team and is seen as a “natural extension” to the growth of its private equity practice and global funds team.
|LATHAM & WATKINS|
|Asset Recovery||1||Labour & Employment||1|
|Business Crime Defence||4||Mining||1|
|Commerical Litigation||4||Private Funds||3|
|Competition||14||Product Liability Defence||1|
|Coporate Governance||3||Project Finance||16|
|Corporate Tax||7||Public Procurement||2|
|Environment||11||Telecoms and Media||2|
|Insolvency & Restructuring||4|
This slew of hires is not just restricted to private equity. The firm continues to make its presence felt across a variety of practice areas and jurisdictions. Another key growth area last year was the intellectual property litigation practice with four hires announced in May 2013. With market-leading practices, the firm is able to respond to clients’ demands for a truly full-service, global, multi-disciplinary practice, thus asserting its dominance in the international marketplace.
|Total Listings in WWL||118||Established||1934|
|Home jurisdiction||US||Total size of firm||2,000|
|Number of partners||629||Number of offices||32|
PEOPLE AND PRACTICES
Latham’s project development and finance team assists clients with complex projects which require a high level of technical expertise and industry knowledge. Practitioners have a deep insight into areas including oil and gas, telecommunications and transportation, and the team guides clients through all aspects of a project’s development, financing and operation. John Sachs is a partner in the finance department; his “outstanding” practice involves the development, financing and acquisition of private power projects. Jonathan Rod handles a variety of securities and finance matters in the energy and infrastructure sectors and is praised for his “high-quality” service in these fields. In the London office, the “brilliant” William Voge acts for sponsors, banks and underwriters on electricity and oil and gas projects around the globe.
The capital markets team numbers more than 300 lawyers and advises on nearly every type of capital markets offering including IPOs, private placement and equity derivatives. Michael Chambers is “highly recommended” for his debt and equity practice and has substantial experience involving participants in the energy sector. In the Singapore office, Sharon Lau represents both issuers and underwriters in US and international securities transactions. Craig Nethercott co-chairs the global Islamic finance practice and is a “well-respected” figure in this field. Mark Stegemoeller counts Credit Suisse and JPMorgan among his big-name clients and is “highly experienced” in structured finance transactions.
The firm’s antitrust and competition practice provides an integrated service to clients and members counsel on the full scope of antitrust and competition law issues. Sven Völcker’s practice covers the full range of EU and German competition law. He is a “respected expert” and has experience in industries including aviation, high technology, software and financial services. Also situated in the Brussels office, Lars Kjølbye is a “dynamic” practitioner. He advises clients in areas such as abuse of dominance, restrictive practices and merger control. Margaret Zwisler is recognised for her “terrific” antitrust litigation practice. She is a “leader” on the class action defence side and has successfully represented a number of companies at trial. Michael Egge is global co-chair of the antitrust and competition practice group. He is an “authority” on antitrust-sensitive mergers and recent successes include the defence of the Live Nation/Ticketmaster merger.
Latham’s environment, land and resources lawyers advise clients on complex litigation and transactional matters across a variety of industry sectors. Based throughout the US, the team represents and counsels clients in matters including permitting, compliance and litigation. Robert Wyman Jr chairs the department and also co-chairs the air quality and climate change practice. He splits his time between regulatory work and litigation and is praised for his “strategic thinking”. Claudia O’Brien is recognised for her “impressive” work in the clean air and chemicals and pesticide fields. Jean-Philippe Brisson advises oil and gas, industrial and financial institution clients on a wide range of energy and environmental matters. He is praised for his “first-rate negotiation skills”, particularly in commodity transactions.
Latham continues to provide thousands of hours of free legal services and the firm’s pro bono practice is central to its culture. Since signing up to the Law Firm Pro Bono Challenge, Latham has committed to and surpassed the requirement of 60 hours per US lawyer per year. The annual pro bono review published by the firm highlights the efforts and accomplishments of lawyers around the globe in almost every area of public interest law.
DIVERSITY AND SUSTAINABILITY
The firm’s diversity committee monitors and addresses issues relating to its equal opportunity and diversity objectives and Latham runs a number of programmes aimed at achieving these goals such as the Women’s Initiative and the Diversity Scholars programme. In 2007 the firm also launched its Sustainable Measures and Recycling Tactics programme. which aims to reduce the firms’ environmental impact and manage the firm operations in a sustainable manner.
With further hires to the European M&A and Asia finance practices, Latham shows no sign of slowing down as it continues to expand its expertise in key markets. By spreading efforts around the world, Latham can continue to commit to its global, integrated platform thus providing its multinational clients with the comprehensive service they desire.
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