KLegal, the legal arm of big five accountants KPMG, has dealt a blow to both Simmons & Simmons and Masons by poaching a top partner from each firm.
Leading Simmons PFI equity partner Gareth Davies and Masons commerce and finance partner Arun Singh OBE are joining KLegal.
The departure of Davies is a big loss for Simmons. He has been a partner at the firm since 1989 and specialises in projects work for the rail industry.
He does a lot of work for Railtrack – one of Simmons’ biggest clients. He insists Railtrack will not be following him to KLegal.
Davies says: “I felt I was in danger of being left out of things if I didn’t grab this opportunity.”
Simmons issued a statement saying that its rail practice has gone from strength to strength and that it was confident it would continue to do so.
Company secretary and solicitor at Railtrack Simon Osborne says: “Although Gareth will be missed on a personal level, his legal expertise is replicated by other members of the Simmons & Simmons team.”
Arun Singh is joining KLegal as head of the firm’s commercial group. He is bringing with him a number of multinational clients which he refuses to name. But one client is a major airline.
The appointments bring the number of lawyers at KLegal in London to more than 30, and partner James Hodgson says the firm hopes to hit 100 lawyers by the end of this year.