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Pinsent Masons appoints Ian Laing as Global Head of Infrastructure

International law firm Pinsent Masons has appointed Ian Laing to lead its global infrastructure team.

Ian joined Pinsent Masons in 1998 and specialises in capital projects. He has lived and worked in the UK, Hong Kong and most recently Singapore. He will continue to be based Singapore and becomes the Firm’s first global sector head based in the region.

Ian has developed an enviable reputation for delivering significant economic infrastructure investments including projects such as the Mombasa-Nairobi SGR, the Colombo Port City project in Sri Lanka and the East Coast Rail Line in Malaysia – one of the biggest Belt and Road projects to date.

Ian succeeds Richard Laudy. Under Richard’s stewardship Pinsent Masons’ infrastructure sector has rapidly internationalised and established a full-service offering in relation to the structuring, funding, delivery and disposal of infrastructure assets in addition to disputes and litigation work. Richard played a pivotal role in establishing the Firm’s infrastructure offerings in Australia and South Africa. Pinsent Masons now acts for a range of infrastructure providers including more than half the world’s top 50 contractors as well as funders and investors, and work originating in the sector accounts for some 20% of the Firm’s global revenues.

Richard will stay with the Firm and be tasked with further-developing its growing Africa practice.

Pinsent Masons’ infrastructure team has worked on a number of significant deals recently including advising Dangote Industries on the procurement of its $12bn greenfield oil refinery in Nigeria (the largest on the continent once completed).

Ian Laing, Global Head of Infrastructure at Pinsent Masons said, “We have developed a global multi-disciplinary offering that gives governments and private companies alike the advice needed to plan, analyse, structure and execute large-scale capital projects – and investors the confidence to fund projects internationally. Major infrastructure providers are no longer working one jurisdiction, but operating in many. Further, we are seeing technology and data drive change in the sector and that’s something we are uniquely well-placed to support upon. We have the global resource, and the local knowledge to understand the commercial, geographical, political, strategic, and technical, factors that impact infrastructure markets around the world.”

Richard Foley, Senior Partner at Pinsent Masons said, “The infrastructure sector is rapidly evolving and Ian is an excellent choice to ensure we continue to stay ahead of that. Increasing legal, regulatory and political complexity and risks are challenging clients in this sector. As a result, our clients continue to demand more than pure legal expertise and that means that, whilst law remains at the core of our business we are deploying frequently a wider range of professional skillsets and technologies which are complimentary to sector and legal experience. Ian is a natural innovator and a great ambassador of the Firm’s values, both of which are important at a time of immense change for the firm and the infrastructure sector.”

Pinsent Masons appoints new Head of Tax Fraud Investigations in London

International law firm Pinsent Masons has further enhanced its commercial litigation, regulatory and tax litigation practice with the appointment of Andrew Sackey as a contentious tax partner in its London office. Andrew will work with clients across each of the firm’s five key global sectors – Energy, Infrastructure, Financial Services, Real Estate and Advanced Manufacturing & Technology.

Andrew will join the multi-disciplinary team from the Fraud Investigation Service at HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) where he has led their Offshore Corporate and Wealthy enforcement division since its inception in 2016.

He brings vast legal and operational experience in significant fraud and civil tax compliance investigations in the UK and internationally. A former Case Controller at the Serious Fraud Office, and a seconded expert to the judicial cooperation unit at the Council of the EU, he has most recently focused on tackling suspected tax fraud and related non-compliance involving large companies.

Notably, Andrew has led and developed HMRC’s operational approach to the “failure to prevent facilitation of tax evasion” offences under the Criminal Finances Act 2017, and, as the UK operational lead for the recently established J5 Global Tax Enforcement collaboration; he has a rare appreciation of current trans-national enforcement considerations.

Jason Collins, Head of the Litigation, Regulatory & Tax team at Pinsent Masons, commented: “I am delighted that Andrew will be joining our growing multidisciplinary practice. Andrew has a wealth of knowledge across tax and civil fraud matters and, in raising awareness about the Criminal Finances Act, has worked with a broad spectrum of organisations, both in the UK and internationally, akin to our cross-sectoral client base.

“Andrew’s background and expertise means that he will bring with him a unique and highly relevant perspective that will enable us to grow our client offering across both preventative and defence work in each of our five key global sectors. He will work closely with our tax, forensic accounting and civil fraud teams, giving us a powerful and compelling market proposition.

“Andrew has a brilliant and engaging way of speaking about his work and we are looking forward to introducing him to clients who seek support on how best to mitigate the risk of non-compliance under the Criminal Finances Act. The Act has now had a 2-year gestation period and with HMRC indicating that a number of investigations have been launched across a range of commercial sectors, it is a critical time.”

Firm Boosts Corporate Practice With Two Director Appointments

Squire Patton Boggs has strengthened its Corporate Practice in Manchester with the appointment of two legal directors. Louise Barber and James Thompson have joined the firm having previously occupied in-house legal roles at FTSE companies Pets at Home Group plc and BAE Systems plc.

Formerly a senior associate at DLA Piper and then group legal director of Pets at Home Group plc, Ms. Barber practices a wide range of corporate work, with a particular focus on cross-border public and private mergers and acquisitions, including public takeovers, equity capital markets transactions, joint ventures and corporate governance. She has particular experience in advising companies operating in the retail, transport and logistics, and healthcare sectors.

Mr. Thompson worked at Pinsent Masons LLP and then spent more than five years in-house with BAE Systems plc and the private equity-backed Daisy Group. He delivers corporate acquisitions, disposals and joint venture arrangements, and provides commercial legal advice in the course of group restructures, private equity transactions and equity capital markets arrangements.

Giles Chesher, head of the Manchester Corporate team, said: “Louise and James are highly experienced, valuable additions to our growing Corporate team, with extensive private practice and in-house experience that will be prized by our clients. We are delighted to welcome them on board and demonstrate our ambition and commitment to building a market-leading team. We also expect to be announcing further hires in the near future.”

Squire Patton Boggs has one of the largest corporate teams in Manchester, with expertise spanning international and domestic mergers and acquisitions, public company takeovers, initial public offerings and secondary offerings, private equity and joint ventures. Part of the firm’s global Corporate Practice Group of more than 370 corporate lawyers across its 44 offices, the team is well known for advising clients in industry sectors such as private equity, chemicals, manufacturing and energy, and it is widely recognised for its extensive expertise and innovation in the tech sector.

Baker Botts Elects 14-Member Partnership Class

Baker Botts, L.L.P. a leading international energy and technology law firm, today announced the promotion of 14 lawyers to partner, effective January 1, 2020.

“These new partners are future owners and leaders of our Firm,” said John Martin, Managing Partner of Baker Botts. “They provide exemplary client service and share in our culture of collaborative entrepreneurship, creating opportunities with and for others. They make a wide range of contributions to the Firm, not only to their clients and their colleagues, but also in their respective communities.”

The 2020 class of partners comprises lawyers from the firm’s Intellectual Property, Global Projects, Litigation, Corporate and Tax Departments.

Mayer Brown promotes 23 to counsel worldwide

Mayer Brown has announced the promotion of 23 lawyers worldwide to counsel. The appointments are effective January 1, 2020.

“All of these talented lawyers have excelled throughout their careers,” said Mayer Brown Chairman Paul Theiss. “They are highly skilled advocates with a strong commitment to client service and world-class legal skills. It is my pleasure to recognize this group.”

Mayer Brown becomes founding member of new social mobility charity Aspiring Solicitors Foundation

Mayer Brown has become a founding member of a new social mobility charity, the Aspiring Solicitors Foundation (AS Foundation). The AS Foundation was established by Chris White, the founder of Aspiring Solicitors, which is one of the leading UK organizations dedicated to increasing diversity in the legal profession. The AS Foundation and Aspiring Solicitors are separate organizations with different registrations and governance structures.

In recognition of the financial hardship facing many students from low income families, the AS Foundation will provide grants between £25 and £500 to assist eligible applicants who require assistance in pursuing a legal career. The grants will fund costs for laptops, study resources, travel and clothing for interviews/open days/vacation schemes. The AS Foundation announced today that it will begin accepting grant applications in January 2020.

Mayer Brown’s support builds on the firm’s ongoing collaboration with Aspiring Solicitors. The firm has been an affiliate member of Aspiring Solicitors since 2015 and in 2019 71 percent of Mayer Brown’s London training contract offers to vacation scheme participants went to members of Aspiring Solicitors. As a founding member of the AS Foundation Mayer Brown will build on its ongoing work to promote greater social mobility and diversity within the firm.

Sally Davies, London senior partner at Mayer Brown, said: “The AS Foundation has our full support. We actively engage with schools, universities, students and a range of partnership organizations to make our career opportunities more accessible to under-represented groups. This work is vital. However if students are prevented from attending open days, work experience or vacation schemes because they cannot afford to, the sector will not be able to tap into this talent pipeline. The AS Foundation grants will remove some of this financial burden for students from lower socio-economic backgrounds considering a career in law. We are delighted to be part of such a fantastic charity and we look forward to continuing our work with this inspirational organization.”

Fried Frank Welcomes Jérôme S. Friedrich as a Finance Partner in the Corporate Department

Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP announced today that Jérôme S. Friedrich has joined the Firm as a partner in the Finance Practice and Corporate Department. He will be based in the Firm’s Frankfurt office.

Mr. Friedrich has nearly 20 years of experience in the finance sector. He represents German and multinational investors, sponsors, funds, banks and other companies, primarily advising on matters in acquisition finance, real estate finance, structured finance, and complex multijurisdictional transactions.

“Jérôme’s broad finance practice and comprehensive knowledge of the German finance market is a tremendous benefit to the Firm,” said David J. Greenwald, chairman of Fried Frank. “We look forward to working with him as we continue to expand our presence in Europe to meet our clients’ needs in their most sophisticated and complex transactions.”

At Fried Frank, Mr. Friedrich will work closely with corporate partner Dr. Juergen van Kann and other members of the Corporate Department in the Frankfurt office to meet a growing demand for expertise in the European finance sector.

“We are delighted to welcome Jérôme to our Frankfurt office,” said corporate partner Dr. Juergen van Kann. “His work is at the forefront of his industry and will be immensely beneficial to our clients as we confront the challenges in Europe’s evolving financial environment.”

Fried Frank Continues European Growth, Adds John J. Satory to the Capital Markets Practice in London

Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP announced today that John J. Satory has joined the Firm as a partner in the Capital Markets Practice and member of the Corporate Department. He will be based in the Firm’s London office.

Mr. Satory has significant expertise advising on a variety of cross-border capital markets offerings for both issuers and underwriters, with substantial experience in offerings in particular involving the energy, telecommunications, consumer retail, tech and bio-tech industries as well as financial institutions. He has worked on a number of high-profile matters in Europe, Asia and North America, and has a particular focus on Northern Europe. At Fried Frank, Mr. Satory’s practice will focus on equity capital markets transactions, debt and other securities offerings, and other securities law considerations arising in restructurings, M&A and private equity transactions, and related financings in Europe and globally. He will also advise clients on corporate governance, SEC reporting, and other compliance matters.

“We are pleased to welcome John to our London office, which has seen significant growth in recent years,” said David J. Greenwald, chairman of Fried Frank. “John’s experience further boosts our capital markets experience in London and aligns with our core offerings across the Firm.”

Ashurst boosts banking capability in Luxembourg with partner hire

Fabien joins from Ogier, where he has worked for over seven years and most recently was co-managing partner of their Luxembourg office. He joined Ogier in 2012 from Bonn Steichen& Partners and was promoted to Partner and Head of Banking in 2014.

A technical and experienced banking lawyer, Fabien specialises in acquisition and funds finance, real estate finance, loans and bond issuance, as well as more general regulatory and insolvency/restructuring matters.

Commenting on the appointment, Isabelle Lentz, managing partner of Luxembourg, said:

“We are seeing a very high volume of banking and finance transactions with Luxembourg involvement, and Fabien’s expertise of the core Luxembourg banking and finance business together with his deep knowledge of insolvency matters, will be a valuable addition to our team. Following the recent appointments of Cécile Henlé, Georges Simon, and Antonios Nezeritis, Fabien’s hire also further demonstrates our growing commitment to expand our capability in Luxembourg.”

Fabien Debroise added:

“Ashurst has been making great headway in Luxembourg, a key financial centre, and I am delighted to be joining the team at an exciting time of expansion and growth, and helping to further grow the banking and finance offering.”

Ashurst boosts project finance offering with partner hire in New York

Matt joins from JPMorgan Chase & Co., where he was an Executive Director & Assistant General Counsel and advised the Public Finance Group in the firm’s investment bank. Matt has been representing underwriters on municipal bond issuances for almost 15 years. He has advised on all types of municipal bonds, including those issued to finance US P3 projects, general obligation bonds, revenue bonds, as well as bonds involving conduit borrowers. Prior to JP Morgan, Matt was a member of Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe’s public finance group in New York.

Andy Fraiser, global head of project finance, commented:

“We are excited to welcome Matt and his deep knowledge of public finance to the firm. We intend to establish ourselves as the world’s leading law firm in the infrastructure market and so providing full service capability to infrastructure clients in the US is a strategic priority for us. Public finance remains a cornerstone of the US infrastructure market and so Matt’s skill set is very relevant to our business.”

Matthew Tague added:

“Ashurst has a very clear vision for what it wants to achieve in the US, which is impressive, logical and realistic. In recent years, the team has advised on many of the largest and most complex infrastructure projects that have been publicly financed, and so the firm’s platform and strategy is very relevant to my practice.”