Baker Botts loses partner to Norton Rose swoop

Baker Botts corporate finance partner Andrei Yakovlev has quit after just two months to head Norton Rose‘s capital markets IPO push in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE).

Yakovlev’s move is a blow to Baker Botts, with sources at the firm saying they were “shocked by his departure”.

Two months ago Baker Botts said it was a coup to steal the much sought-after partner from Dewey Ballantine, where Yakovlev headed the capital markets practice for CEE, Central Asia and Turkey. Yakovlev said Baker Botts was an excellent firm, but that it was not the best fit in his specific practice area. “Baker Botts has a huge future in Europe but the process of growing its offices needs to be much faster,” he explained. “Norton Rose, on the other hand, offers an already-developed platform to grow.”

Baker Botts’ Moscow chief Steve Wardlaw said the firm can confirm that Yakovlev left last Wednesday (12 September), but he would not comment on his move at this time.

Tim Marsden, Norton Rose global head of corporate finance, said: “We’d already been in discussions with Andrei before he joined Baker Botts and we’re happy that he’s now decided to join us.”