Norton Rose raids Dechert for corporate insurance ace

Dechert has lost highly rated corporate insurance partner David Whear to Norton Rose. Senior associate Ashley Prebble will also move across to Norton Rose, leaving Dechert’s London office depleted in this area.

Whear is a major boost to Norton Rose’s Lloyd’s practice, led by Cheryl Ronaldson, as well as bringing wider expertise. His clients at Dechert include Dukes Place’s.

Whear move is confirmation that Norton Rose’s corporate and regulatory insurance practice is in the ascendancy. Partner Maria Ross has been building up an outsourcing practice, while James Bateson, who heads the unit, has been building the firm’s international franchise and recently advised American International Group’s (AIG) investment in the People’s Insurance Company of China.

Bateson said: “That’s the type of practice we want to have – acting for major players around the world. We need to make sure that in pursuing that we don’t lose site of the importance of the insurance market at home.”

He added: “The fact that we’ve been able to bring David in at this time is proof of our reputation.”

At Dechert, the corporate and regulatory insurance practice has until now been centred around Whear.