Skadden Arps suffers double partner defection to Kirkland

The departure of Jonathan Pedersen and Vincent Pisano to Kirkland's New York office is a surprise given Skadden's unblemished record on partner retention.

Pedersen was based at Skadden's Hong Kong office for 12 years, and was head of the branch for a time. He gained some notoriety last year when it was announced he was joining Linklaters, but within days, Pedersen changed his mind due to “family reasons”.

Pisano, who has been with Skadden for 25 years, is hoping to “expand and enhance” Kirkland's capital markets practice, despite the current dirge in the debt and equity markets.

During his time at Skadden, Pisano has worked on a number of high-profile deals, and counted Drexel Burnham Lambert, the legendary junk bond that pleaded guilty to securities fraud in 1989, as a client.