Reed Smith adds to City structured finance team with CC partner

Clifford Chance finance partner Claude Brown is set to join Reed Smith in the latest boost to the US firm’s structured products and derivatives practice in London.

Brown’s move to Reed Smith comes amid a high volume of partner moves between firms’ structured finance practices, with Clifford Chance City duo Neil Hamilton and Matthew Cahill recently joining Paul Hastings and Sidley Austin respectively.

It also follows Reed Smith’s recruitment of Berwin Leighton Paisnerinternational structured finance head Tamara Box (21 December 2011). In addition, it added Clifford Chance capital markets partner Peter Zaman last year (17 April 2012).

A Reed Smith spokesperson said in a statement: “Reed Smith can confirm that Claude Brown will be joining the firm in the coming weeks. Reed Smith has been successfully building its London practices in structured finance and derivatives over the past two years on a sustained basis. The firm has appointed a number of high-profile partners in the recent past, including Tamara Box, Helena Nathanson, Chris Borg, Nick Stainthorpe, Peter Zaman, Brett Hillis and Rashpaul Bahia.

“All have joined the firm’s London office as part of a strategic initiative to boost the firm’s capabilities in structured finance, regulatory, derivatives and commodities.

“Claude’s arrival further enhances and diversifies the firm’s growing offering in all these areas and increases the synergies between these important and growing practice areas for the firm.”

Earlier this year US rival Kaye Scholer launched a London structured finance practice with the hire of Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer partner Stuart Axford (23 November 2012).

The news comes after The Lawyer this week revealed that Clifford Chance global private equity head David Walker had resigned to join the London office of Latham & Watkins. His replacement will be appointed in due course, with firmwide corporate head Matthew Layton expected to oversee the practice in the short term (8 April 2013).

For more on the shift away from the magic circle in the City structured finance market, see Notebook.