Linklaters mourns passing of ‘legendary’ French partner

Linklaters has confirmed that French M&A star Thierry Vassogne has died at the age of 59 after suffering a heart attack.

Thierry Vassogne
Thierry Vassogne

Vassogne joined Linklaters in 1998 as co-managing partner of the firm’s Paris office. He was recognised by many in the French market as a leader in corporate transactions and had a stellar client list including L’Oréal, Morgan Stanley and Sanofi-Synthélabo.

Over the years he advised on a series of high-profile M&A deals and helped build Linklaters’ profile in France.

In a tribute to their colleague, Linklaters’ Paris partners said: “In an arena as naturally riven with conflict as public M&A, Thierry’s capacity to bring the negotiating table to agreement after days of debate was legendary. Many partners recall that with a few apposite words, between two cigarettes, the most complex of constructs could be made to look simple when he decided the moment was right.”

Noting Vassogne’s “wry humour, halo of Gauloise smoke and philosophical approach to life”, the partners added: “To many in Silk Street, Thierry was the epitome of the typical Frenchman.”

Paris managing partner Paul Lignières added: “Thierry was one of the greatest business lawyers in France. The vast number of messages that we’ve received from both clients and lawyers alike over the past two days confirm this view. His arrival at Linklaters in Paris was transformational, giving a new dimension to the firm in France and to the lawyers with whom he worked and who carry on his work today.

“It’s a tremendous loss to the profession.”

Vassogne was buried on 8 January in Paris’s Père Lachaise cemetery.