Top 50 US Firms in London Rank14

US elite firm Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton prides itself on being an integrated global partnership. Nearly half of its partners are in New York, but the firm has expanded elsewhere in the world and it now has 16 offices in 13 countries globally housing over 1,200 lawyers. The firm was founded in 1946 in New York and Washington DC and since then has forged itself a role as a go-to adviser not only to many of the world’s largest

US elite firm Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton prides itself on being an integrated global partnership. Nearly half of its partners are in New York, but the firm has expanded elsewhere in the world and it now has 16 offices in 13 countries globally housing over 1,200 lawyers.

The firm was founded in 1946 in New York and Washington DC and since then has forged itself a role as a go-to adviser not only to many of the world’s largest corporates, but also sovereign states. Many of its lawyers have gone on to work in public bodies in the US such as the Securities & Exchange Commission, as assistant US attorneys, judges and other similar roles.

Cleary was one of the very first international firms to open in Paris, launching there in 1949, and Paris remains a key European hub for the firm. It followed the Paris opening in 1960 when it set up in Brussels. It played a role helping to draft the post-war treaties which led to the formation of the European Union.

London was its third international base, opened in 1971 – although Cleary did not start practising English law until 1997. Meanwhile the firm also launched in Hong Kong in 1980 and it now has US, Hong Kong and English law capability there.

Much of Cleary’s international expansion has come in the 2000s, with openings in Milan, Cologne, Beijing, Buenos Aires, São Paulo, Abu Dhabi and Seoul since 2001. The expansion has been through greenfield launches and lateral hires, rather than mergers.

Cleary’s managing partner Michael Gerstenzang, a private investment funds specialist, was elected to the role effective 1 January 2017. He replaced Mark Leddy who led Cleary between 2011 and 2016.

TRAINING CONTRACTS

What is the trainee salary at Cleary Gottlieb?

1st year trainee: £48,000

2nd year trainee: £52,000

What is the NQ salary at Cleary Gottlieb?

NQ: £120,000

Number of trainees: 27

CLEARY GOTTLIEB STEEN & HAMILTON FACTS

Founded: 1946

Location: London Barbican