SJ Berwin bolsters depleted funds team with four partner promotions

SJ Berwin has made up four funds partners to plug the gap left following the exit of partners Nigel van Zyl and Oliver Rochman to Proskauer Rose.

Rob Day
Rob Day

Associates Shawn D’Aguiar, Ed Hall, Cindy Valentine and Laura Charkin all enter the partnership today following off-season internal promotions voted in on Friday (23 September).

Funds partners van Zyl and Rochman resigned in July to join Proskauer, the City firm’s former merger suitor, as first revealed by The Lawyer (27 July 2011).

The departures were followed by the exit of six funds associates to the US firm earlier this month (5 September 2011). None of today’s  new partners had been heading for Proskauer.

SJ Berwin managing partner Rob Day said: “We’ll look to hire laterally if good opportunities present themselves. But our approach has always been one around internal talent.”

D’Aguiar focuses on private equity funds and emerging markets, especially India and China, while Hall specialises in private equity funds and some infrastructure funds.

Valentine’s focus is secondary transactions and funds activity in Africa. She has advised HgCapital, one of van Zyl’s main clients. Charkin is in the tax team and specialises in private fund structuring.

This is not the first time that SJ Berwin made up partners outside its normal promotions round. In November 2009 it promoted Vanessa Therrode and handed her responsibility for its structured finance practice following the departure of partner Brain Carne (16 November 2009).