Clifford Chance loses legacy Pünder leader

One of the last survivors of Clifford Chance’s post-merger board is departing, leaving a question mark over who will take charge of the relationship with key client Siemens.

Peter Nägele, a legacy partner with Pünder, the German firm that merged with Clifford Chance and Rogers & Wells in 2000, is leaving the firm for an unknown destination.

A keen supporter of the tripartite merger, Nägele was appointed as joint regional managing partner for Europe with Peter Cornell, who is now Clifford Chance’s firmwide managing partner, immediately after the merger.

However, two years ago Nägele, then European managing partner, suffered an embarrassing defeat in the election for German managing partner, when incumbent Hans-Josef Schneider won with 70 per cent of the vote.

A capital markets specialist, Nägele was client care partner for Siemens. A Clifford Chance spokesperson declined to comment on who would be taking over the relationship, but said: “We’re in close contact with all clients.”

Others in the post-merger line-up have either left, as did chairman Keith Clark, chief operating officer Garth Poll-ard and deputy chairman for the Americas Kevin Arquit, or they have gone back to fee-earning, as did Asia managing partner John East, former chief executive Michael Bray and deputy chairman for Europe Thomas Gasteyer.

Nägele was unavailable for comment.