Linklaters’ Frieh just wants to be free

It will soon be all change for Linklaters‘ private equity practice in Paris. Michel Frieh, the lead partner for private equity and M&A in the French capital, is set to leave the magic circle firm to set up his own business.

Frieh thinks that, at the ripe old age of 50, he is “getting too old” to keep up with the “young ones” in mainstream transactions and wants to do something “a bit more fun”.

And what can be more fun than working on small capital deals? Frieh has his heart set on starting up on his own so he can hand-pick these more entertaining transactions.

Frieh, having a heart of gold, did not want to leave Linklaters with a hole in Paris and so groomed his protégé, senior associate David Swinburne, who will be made partner on 1 May.

Having lost David Aknin to Weil Gotshal & Manges in 2002, Frieh was brought in to add some experience. Now Linklaters’ private equity practice is looking distinctly young at heart.