Categories:United States

Dewey's Sharp hits out at stricken firm's US management

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  • “In mid-March I told [staff] I was not about to disappear. The situation changed,” Sharp told The Lawyer in an interview published today. Yes, it certainly did change. Sharp negotiated a new job in about a week, and jumped into that lifeboat. It is basically a coincidence that the Moscow and Almaty offices went to the same firm. Sharp may feel terrible, but not nearly as terrible as those he left behind who are now unemployed.

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  • to anon at 10.37
    does that mean peter found his religion when the money stopped coming in?

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  • @Arthur: "London also quite recently (1 yr ago) signed new leases on all floors. Shocking bearing in mind the financial indicators available (that were ignored by all)."
    Dewey & LeBoeuf in London was a partnership until relatively recently. You can bet your bottom dollar that Peter Sharp as the managing partner in London was one of the partners holding the existing leases of their building, and therefore would have been personally liable on them. New leases would presumably have been completed in the name of the new LLP, getting Peter and the other partner signatories to the original leases off the hook. Maybe he was not ignoring the financial indicators as you suggest, but rather the opposite, getting himself out of the line of fire by the landlord if the firm went down. Only he can know what he knew of the financial plight of the firm when the new leases were signed, and what the motivations really were for doing this, but maybe it is not as shocking as it might appear at first sight; it is possible that financial indicators, far from being ignored, could conceivably have been a significant motivating factor. We will probably never know, but things are not always as simple as they may seem.

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  • Some of these comments are pretty amusing. Sharp loves his publicity - he loves talking to The Lawyer and Legal Week - hence this article among many others over the years. Wonder what he thinks now?

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  • I am more interested in what Morgan Lewis are thinking after reading this.
    Turd in a punchbowl rather than jewel in the crown comes to mind.
    Still they do say there is no such thing as bad publicity!

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  • to anon at 11:22. What did you expect Peter to do, stay with a sinking ship? He tried his best but some of you are bitter and jealous.

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  • to ricky
    yeah, and the generals turn against the leadership when the war starts to go badly and their backsides might be toast
    meanwhile the road the good times turning a blind eye to waht was going on
    how brave

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  • @Ricky: yes, he had every right to leave, as did anyone else. What stinks is that he told people he was not going anywhere, then, when he changed his mind, without telling anyone he went headlong into look-after-number-one self-preservation mode and suddenly disappeared. Is it any wonder that others in the office thought his bevaviour was despicable and became very bitter?

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  • The longer version of this article (“A Matter of Principals”) says “Sharp, who had always been considered one of the market’s nice guys....” What a joke. The journalist only says this because Sharp has been sucking up to him (and similar journalists at Legal Week and elsewhere) for years. Sharp’s former colleagues would probably argue to the contrary, and his new colleagues at MLB will figure this out soon enough. Furthermore, Sharp never had any plan to save the London office. According to the longer version of this article, even the plan he put to Dewey’s New York HQ only included half the partners. So he was sacrificing half the partners and half the office to save himself and what he considered to be the best part of the office. Remember, as a disputes partner, Sharp has no repeat business. He and the members of his team are reliant on a strong transactions team to feed them work. So everything he was doing was designed to save his own skin – the only reason he ever planned to move with anyone else was so they could feed him work and keep his practice going.

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  • Sharp was never one of the market's nice guys. I witnessed him shafting people loyal to him in the past when it suited his interests to do so. This debacle is just a more public example of behaviour he has long been exhibiting. I'm glad that these comments are for the most part reflecting his true colours.

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