Chadbourne partner exits as Bakers makes capital markets push

Baker & McKenzie has added to its finance and capital markets practice in Moscow with the hire of banking and finance partner Simon Morgan from Chadbourne & Parke.

Morgan headed White & Case’s Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) capital markets group before joining Chadbourne & Parke’s Moscow office in 2010.

His departure for Baker & McKenzie follows the relocation of the firms’ London capital markets partner Roy Pearce, who was moved to the Moscow office earlier this summer.

Morgan said there had been a rise in the complex structured transactions in Russia and CIS. Pearce agreed, adding: “Although the capital markets remain volatile, we’re seeing increasing activity in Russia, particularly in the debt markets, and I’m optimistic about the longer-term prospects for equity offerings. This is a key high-growth market and we see a lot of opportunity for both IPOs and bond offerings out of the region.”

The move follows a number of exits from Chadbourne in recent weeks.

Herbert Smith hired a six-partner team of litigators from Chadbourne’s New York and London offices earlier last month, ahead of its launch in New York (2nd August 2012), while Washington DC-based arbitration partner Ignacio Suárez Anzorena left to rejoin his former firm Clifford Chance (28th August 2012).

Bakers has held on to its crown as the largest law firm in the world by turnover for the 2011-12 financial year, which saw total income hit a record $2.3bn (28 August 2012). “There’s a time where you need to think, look at the future and say okay, now I’m going to invest in the future,” said the firm’s executive committee chairman Eduardo Leite after the firm’s financial results were released. “That’s exactly what we’re doing.”