Covington & Burling's London office is set to usher in its next phase of development after appointing a new managing partner. John Rupp, a London partner specialising in litigation, arbitration and regulatory work as well as corporate matters, will take over as managing partner of the office on 1 August. He will replace telecoms and media partner Kurt Wimmer, who has held the post for the past three years and is due to return to the firm's Washington office. During Wimmer's tenure, Covington's London office has grown steadily and now has 53 fee-earners. Last year, it made a number of significant hires, including former GlaxoSmithKline general counsel Jim Beery, as well as David Hinds, a tax partner from SJ Berwin. Rupp said: "The opportunity arose because Kurt is sorely needed in the States as there is a lot of telecoms and technology work over there at the moment." He added that Wimmer's appointment in London had been a short-term plan and he had always intended to return to the US. Rupp said that he intends to continue with Wimmer's strategy of building up the firm's main core areas in corporate and life sciences.