Squire Sanders turns to BLP and Wragges for City banking hires

Squire Sanders has made two lateral hires to boost its London finance offering, bringing in Berwin Leighton Paiser (BLP) project finance head Philippa Chadwick and Wragge & Co banking head Paula Laird.

Chadwick specialises in international project finance and development bank finance and was a partner at BLP for four years. Prior to this she did a one-year stint at the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, working on a range of projects in Russia, Poland, Romania and Turkey, among others. Prior to that, she joined Bevan Brittan’s London office in 2003 from legacy Denton Wilde Sapte to spearhead the firm’s banking practice (16 June 2003).

Asset-based lending and asset finance specialist Laird will join the firm from Wragges, where she is currently head of the firm’s banking department and is one of the firm’s key finance contacts for high-profile companies such as Honda UK (1 October 2007).

Before joining Wragges in 2000, Laird was head of legal and company secretary at Chartered Trust, a subsidiary of Standard Chartered Bank.

Chadwick joined Squire Sanders’ London office last month and is set to work with offices across the firm’s global network, particularly with its Moscow, Warsaw, and Asia Pacific hubs. Laird is due to join the London office in January.

Commenting on the hires, Jim Barresi, global head of Squire Sanders’ financial services practice group, said: “Philippa’s arrival is a direct response to demand from our clients for top-level project finance expertise across Europe, Russia and Asia. Her experience will complement and enhance our project finance capabilities in those countries, and we see exciting synergies with our energy and natural resources industry groups.

“[Paula] is a highly respected practitioner in the asset-based lending and asset finance field and adds strength and depth to an already formidable team led by Andrew Knight. Our international platform and existing team will allow Paula to expand her practice and further develop her excellent client relationships.”