Paul elected corporate head at A&O and vows to build private equity

Veteran corporate partner Alan Paul has been elected to replace Mark Wippell as co-head of the magic circle firm’s corporate group.

The role has been given the new title – client development partner – to emphasise the client relationship builing focus of the position.

Paul, who took the reins on 1 May, will work alongside Richard Cranfield after the managing partner role was split in 2004 in an attempt to boost the firm’s client base.

The appointment comes just weeks after Paul was elected to the global management board.

Paul told The Lawyer his new role as client development partner would be slightly less intensive than Mark Wippell’s term.

“Because it was an entirely new role, Mark had to build it from scratch,” he said. “I don’t think it will be quite as difficult for me.”

Paul said his top priority would be further developing the private equity practice.

“It’s already a multi-million pound practice,” he said. “But we’re not pretending that’s good enough.”