This firm appears in the Who's Who Legal 100 2014
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Bill Dougherty was elected chairman of Simpson Thacher & Bartlett in March 2013, succeeding Philip Ruegger who has served in the position since 2004 and overseen much of the firm’s expansion into Asia, Europe and Latin America and throughout the US.
|SIMPSON THACHER & BARTLETT|
|Arbitration||1||Insolvency & Restructuring||1|
|Banking||5||Insurance & Reinsurance||4|
|Corporate Governance||8||Private Funds||10|
|Corporate Tax||1||Product Liability Defence||1|
The firm’s expansion has always been guided by its clients’ needs and most recently this saw Simpson Thacher open its doors in Seoul, South Korea to better serve its clients in the country and assist international clients in their Korean business endeavours.
|Total Listings in WWL||58||Established||1884|
|Home jurisdiction||US||Total size of firm||850|
|Number of partners||188||Number of offices||11|
PEOPLE AND PRACTICES
Simpson Thacher enjoys a “prestigious reputation” in the investment management industry and represents a broad base of open-end and closed-end funds with over $110 billion of assets under management. The firm recently represented The Carlyle Group in the establishment of its sixth fund dedicated to buyouts and other private equity investments in the US. The CP VI fund raised $13 billion of total commitments from 269 investors from 43 countries. Thomas Bell is a “sensational” funds lawyer who is “internationally renowned” for his experience in fund formation. He oversees the firm’s private funds practice and advises on a range of buyout, real estate, venture capital and other private equity funds as well as hedge funds, offshore funds and alternative asset categories. Michael Wolitzer is an “established practitioner” who garners high praise from peers and clients for his “astute legal mind”. Philip Culhane in Hong Kong focuses on private funds work in Asia and his fund formation experience covers the range of private equity, special situations and distressed debt funds, venture capital funds, hedge funds and other private investment structures. Glenn Sarno represents domestic and international fund sponsors including KKR, Arlon, CVC Credit Partners and BTG Pactual. He is “highly sought after” by sponsors in structuring house arrangements and spin-outs. Jason Glover in London is “world class” at private equity fund formation and has an “unsurpassed” reputation in the field.
Corporate law is a further strength of the firm with lawyers recognised for their corporate governance and mergers and acquisitions expertise. Highlight transactions include representing KKR and Affinity Equity Partners in connection with the announced agreement whereby Anheuser-Busch InBev will reacquire Oriental Brewery from KKR and Affinity for an enterprise value of US$5.8 billion, and representing Cetera Financial Group in its acquisition by RCS Capital Corporation. “Corporate law specialist” Lee Meyerson heads the firm’s M&A group and has been “instrumental” in assisting banks, private investors and government agencies in transactions since the onset of the financial crisis in 2008. In October 2008, he represented the US Treasury in connection with developing, structuring and documenting its $250 billion TARP programme for purchasing equity in US financial institutions. Robert Spatt in New York advises public and private boards of directors on corporate governance and M&A transactions. Charles Cogut is a “leading authority” on M&A law and has extensive experience in cross-border transactions and advising on governance matters and fiduciary responsibilities. Richard Beattie is a “trusted adviser” to boards of directors and non-management directors on governance issues, investigations and crisis situations. His M&A experience includes participating in JPMorgan Chase & Co’s $58 billion acquisition of Bank One Corporation. Alan Klein is “greatly respected” by peers for his work in this sector, having advised Microsoft Corporation in connection with its announced $7.2 billion acquisition of Nokia’s phone business, its acquisition of Skype for $8.5 billion in cash from the investor group led by Silver Lake and in its investment in Barnes & Noble’s Nook business. London-based Adam Signy is particularly well known for his work in relation to public company takeovers and private equity transactions. He also advises on corporate governance matters and is a “great asset” to the firm according to one client.
The firm’s capital markets practice includes “standouts” William Hinman Jr and Jaime Mercado. Hinman Jr in Palo Alto advises both issuers and underwriters in capital raising transactions and has been involved in high-profile transactions including the IPOs of Facebook, Google, eBay and VMware. Mercado divides his time between New York and São Paulo and focuses on debt and equity financings and transactions. Head of the firm’s Tokyo office David Sneider is noted for his “strong technical skills”. He features in our research alongside Takahiro Saito and Alan Cannon, who are also recommended for their debt and equity capital markets expertise. Celia Lam in Hong Kong has represented Bank of Communications in its HK$70 billion private placement and the underwriters in the IPO of L’Occitane International (the first Luxembourg company listed in Hong Kong). John Lobrano in New York concentrates his practice on offerings of convertible notes and other equity-linked securities, as well as high-yield debt financings.
Simpson Thacher’s commitment to pro bono is “unwavering”, averaging 97 hours per US lawyer on matters each year. The firm represents individuals, micro-entrepreneurs, environmental organisations, non-profit organisations and Guantanamo detainees. One of the firm’s long term projects has been representing the Campaign for Fiscal Equity since 1995 in remedying inadequacies in the New York City public schools. The firm represented CFE in a landmark ruling from the state’s highest court affirming that the New York City school system does not provide students with the opportunity to obtain a sound basis education as required by the state constitution. In response, additional funding in the billions is being made available to support education in New York City schools.
The firm sees promoting diversity as a continuous process within the firm focusing on recruitment, promotion and retention. The diversity committee is made up of 27 members and there are additional mentoring programmes and affinity groups within the firm. In the last three years, 22 per cent of new partners were women. Furthermore, to support the work-family needs of its lawyers, Simpson Thacher offers flexible work options including reduced hours schedules at 60 per cent to 80 per cent of the workweek, telecommuting arrangements and job sharing where appropriate.
In a press release by the firm Dougherty says his plans are to “continue to build upon the firm’s traditional strengths, while also leveraging our worldwide platform and market-leading practice areas to best serve our clients’ most important needs, wherever they might be”.
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