Ex-KLegal boss turns back on law for recruitment role

Former KLegal managing partner Nick Holt has quit the law and re-emerged at headhunting firm Global Legal Search alongside his former Coward Chance (now Clifford Chance) partner Colin Potter.

Holt, who is understood to have had a number of alternative offers, said: “I’ve been a partner in a US law firm, a partner in a major UK law firm and an in-house counsel. I had to ask myself, did I really want to do something like that again?”

Holt quit KLegal in January following a decision by the firm and its accounting parent KPMG to sever ties.

KLegal’s 2002 merger with Scotland’s McGrigor Donald, which Holt steered through, left it in a strong position where it could continue
as an independent law firm without the backing of KPMG.

Holt and Potter worked together at Coward Chance before Holt went in-house in Hong Kong in 1984. The pair were nearly reunited in 2000 when Maurice Allen persuaded Potter to leave Clifford Chance to join his Weil Gotshal & Manges team at White & Case. Holt, who was also at Weil, plumped for a role as managing partner of KLegal instead.