DLA Piper’s Sir Nigel goes upstairs

It was all chums together in the colonial-esque environs of the Landmark Hotel yesterday as DLA Piper’s new “streamlined” global management team, including those from the US side of the business, showed its collective happy face for the first time.

Yesterday the firm confirmed that it is planning a leadership shake-up next year, with co-CEO Nigel Knowles set to replace Tony Angel (whose term as senior partner ends on 30 April 2015) as global co-chairman along with Americas co-chair Roger Meltzer, and London IP partner Simon Levine now gearing up to be DLA Piper’s next joint CEO with Meltzer’s tag team partner Jay Rains.

“I don’t have to try and emulate or become Nigel Knowles, that’d be quite a frightening prospect,” quipped new boss elect Simon Levine.

“For both of us,” rejoindered Big Nige.

Ah bless. The bonhomie is no doubt percolating throughout the entire DLA Piper empire as we speak. In reality Nigel Knowles’ shoes will take some filling, though Levine, who led the largest lateral move ever in the London market when he joined DLA 10 years from legacy Denton Wilde Sapte, knows a thing or two about management.

As the future leader of the world’s largest firm, he’ll need to.

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