Clifford Chance London corporate chief names Jonny Myers as PE head

Clifford Chance’s new corporate chief has named private equity dealmaker Jonny Myers as private equity co-head alongside Oliver Felsenstein.

New global corporate head Guy Norman appointed Myers to co-lead the group a month after stepping into the top role in May. It is the third major corporate leadership change in as many months, following the election of new London corporate head Mark Poulton to replace Simon Tinkler at the beginning of the July (6 July 2010).

Myers handles several of the firm’s biggest private equity relationships and has clung on to key mandates amid the exit of several corporate rainmakers.

Those contacts include Permira, which Myers took on when now managing partner and former corporate head Matthew Layton moved into the corporate role (21 February 2014).

He is also the first point of contact for for Bridgepoint, working with former partner Kem Ihenacho on the acquisition of sports good retailer Wiggle in 2011 and has succesfully lured Cinven away from Ashurst in recent years (22 April 2013).

Those relationships are important to the corporate team following the exit of a host of private equity partners to US firms over the past three years. Ihenacho was the most recent departure, leaving for Latham & Watkins in February (18 February 2014). At Latham he joined former private equity head David Walker and Tom Evans, who both left in 2013 (9 October 2013).

In the past few years relationships with the firm’s key private equity clients like Carlyle, Permira and KKR have been threatened by the exit of high-profile partners including Ed Gander, Jason Glover and Adam Signy. Myers, a former Lovells partner, has long been expected to take the PE crown. However the role was taken up by Frankfurt-based Felsenstein in 2013. 

It has been a case of musical chairs in the magic circle corporate team ever since the election of former corporate chief Matthew Layton as managing partner earlier this year (27 November 2013).

Corporate partner Guy Norman was elected his replacement as new global corporate chief. He stepped into the role at the same time as London corporate head Simon Tinkler stood down (25 February 2014).

Norman toyed with taking on the London role himself and is understood to have deliberately left the spot open while he and Layton settled into the new roles.

However he decided not to take on both roles himself and kick-started the soundings for a new London corporate head last month. His four-year term will last until 2018.

Norman said: “I’m delighted that Jonny has joined Oliver in heading our leading global Private Equity team.  This is a large group which spans our international network, including the busy London practice, so there is lots to do. 

”Oliver and Jonny will do a great job in ensuring that this team continues to reinforce its top-notch reputation and capitalise on the opportunities in this exciting segment of the market.”