The head of Kirkland & Ellis’s London office Jim Learner is leaving the firm to join a US private equity house.
London managing partner Learner resigned yesterday. One Kirkland partner described Learner’s resignation as having come, “out of the blue”.
“We’ll try to persuade him to stay,” added the partner. “He’s a great guy, this is a bit of a surprise.”
It is not yet known which private equity house Learner is joining, although it is known that he is due to leave Kirkland in late summer.
Corporate partner Learner is a member of Kirkland’s 15-person management committee and has responsibility for the US firm’s European operations.
His clients include Apax Partners, Apollo Management, Bain Capital, Madison Dearborn Partners, Towerbrook Capital Partners and Vestar Capital Partners Europe.
Learner could not be reached for comment. It is not yet clear who will take over as head of Kirkland’s London office.