Clifford Chance corporate partner Guy Norman is set to enter the race to lead the Clifford Chance corporate group following the promotion of incumbent Matthew Layton.
M&A partner Norman made his opening gambit to enter the competition in an email to partners in recent weeks. Layton will step into the global managing partner position in May following the retirement of David Childs (28 November 2013).
Partners at the magic circle firms have not yet been told of the full list of candidates for the top job, but the firm is expected to reveal details in coming weeks.
Norman, who relocated to London from the Middle East in July 2013 (3 July 2013), is expected to go head-to-head with London corporate head Simon Tinkler, who, sources said, has also “tentatively expressed a desire” to compete in the elections.
One source said: “There isn’t a slam dunk candidate but the key name is Guy.”
Norman relocated to Dubai in 2010 for a three-year stint as part of the firm’s growth strategy. This came after he led the UK team that advised Kraft on its takeover of Cadbury (19 January 2010).
He was also a long-standing adviser to Barclays and in 2008 advised the banking giant on a £7.3bn cash injection by investors (31 October 2008).
According to another source: “The corporate practice isn’t one that’s full of primadonnas or enormous opinions and if anything we’re a bit understated which means there are a lot of people thinking ‘I could lead the world’.”