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Baker & McKenzie (B&M) has lost the head of its Italian project finance practice to boutique firm and Slaughter and May best friend Macchi di Cellere Gangemi.
Marco Padovan joined B&M just over a year ago after 14 years as a chief counsel at the European Investment Bank (EIB). But Padovan said that, in his view, B&M had not shown enough commitment to project finance work. "From my standpoint, there wasn't a strong commitment to project finance at Baker & McKenzie, and particularly in the Italian offices, which act completely independently from each other and didn't agree on a strong common policy for developing a project finance strategy," said Padovan. Padovan has been joined at Macchi by B&M project finance associate Daniela Carminati. He expects to be joined by others from B&M and plans to recruit from other firms. A spokesperson for B&M said the firm's hire of Padovan was a sign of its commitment to project finance as a key area on a global basis. He added: "Our Italian offices, as with all our offices, work closely together for the benefit of clients and the firm as a whole."