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where are kirkland & Ellis’ London offices?


30 St Mary Axe



(The Gherkin)


Who are the main recruitment contacts at Kirkland & Ellis?


Emma Ridley

Associate Director of Attorney Recruiting & Development, International
Claire Astbury | Attorney Recruiting & Development Assistant

Emma Ridley heads

Eve Clarke used to head the attorney recruitment side but moved to Latham & Watkins.


How are CVs submitted to Kirkland & Ellis?


We have recently started using CV Mail, to set up current vacancies, and to receive CV’s from candidates and agencies. Although we do not have any active vacancies at present, could I please ask you to go to register your agency with us, and to submit our terms and conditions?


How do you get to Kirkland & Ellis’ London office?


Aldgate Station is the nearest to the Gherkin. Walk up St Boltolphs then Leadenhall Street and take a right onto St Mary Axe.


Where are Kirkland & Ellis’ other offices worldwide?


Hong Kong
Los Angeles
New York
Palo Alto
San Francisco
Washington, D.C.


How many partners and Fee Earners does Kirkland & Ellis have in London and globally?


Number of Partners: London / Globally

48 partners in London as of 18-9-2014

Number of Fee Earners: London / Globally

125 total including partners as of 18-9-2014

700 partners total globally and around 1600 fee earners.


Where Were K&E Founded?




The firm was founded in 1909[7] by attorneys Stewart G. Shepherd and Robert R. McCormick, a graduate of Northwestern University School of Law and a member of the prominent McCormick family, who would later become the publisher of the Chicago Tribune. The firm’s modern namesakes, Weymouth Kirkland and Howard Ellis, joined the firm in 1915. In 1938, former United States Department of Justice lawyer Hammond Chaffetz joined the firm. The firm now consists of approximately 1,500 attorneys in ten domestic and foreign offices, with particular strength in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago, New York, Palo Alto and Washington, D.C.


Who are Kirkland & Ellis’ most notable clients?


Notable clients

The firm has represented a number of high-profile clients, including United Airlines in that company’s Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings. Other major clients of the firm have included Bain Capital, General Motors, Brown & Williamson, Motorola, Conseco, Honeywell, S. C. Johnson & Son, Apple, Intel, Raytheon, Schering-Plough, Samsung Electronics, Siemens AG, Charter Communications and Westinghouse Electric Company. The firm is presently representing BP in the litigation arising out of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.


What political contributions have Kirkland & Ellis made?


Political contributions

Kirkland, through its employees, was a top-20 contributor to Barack Obama in 2008, giving at least $493,735.[8] The firm’s attorneys leaned heavily (77%) Democratic in their political contributions during the 2008 election cycle, which were substantial ($579,976 as of 10/29/07).[9]

The firm has its own Political Action Committee (PAC), which gave 97% of its contributions to Democrats during the 2008 election cycle, as of 12/7/07.[10] The firm’s members have given more money to Illinois Senator Dick Durbin (by some measures the most liberal Democrat in the Senate)[11] since 1989 than donors from any other company or organization.[12]


Who is the chairman of Kirkland & Ellis?


Kirkland chairman is Jeffrey Hammes (verified again in jan 2013)

Professional Profile

Mr. Hammes joined Kirkland & Ellis in 1985 and has been a partner since 1991. Mr. Hammes became Chairman of Kirkland’s 15-person Global Management Executive Committee in 2010 and was elected to serve a second three-year term beginning in February 2013. Mr. Hammes is a founding partner of the San Francisco office opened in 2003 and the Palo Alto office opened in 2008. Mr. Hammes also led the Firm’s expansion into Asia with the opening of offices in Hong Kong, Shanghai and Beijing.

Mr. Hammes has concentrated his practice on structuring and negotiating complex business transactions including mergers, acquisitions, leveraged buyouts, going private transactions, and private equity compensation and governance matters. Clients include Bain Capital and Golden Gate Capital. Described by clients in Chambers Global as a “lawyer who grasps the big picture with every transaction”, Mr. Hammes has been named to Chambers Global, The World’s Leading Lawyers for Business every year since 2001 and to The Best Lawyers in America every year since 2006. In 2012, he was named to Crain’s “Who’s Who” in Chicago Business.


How do K&E rank re PEP and total revenue?


Ranking in Legal Business / Lawyer 100 / Am Law

5th Globally on revenue with $2billion in 2014

7th on Profits per partner with $3.2 million in 2014


Who are the main partners at K&E London?


Stephen Lucas – Banking Partner – Joined from Weil (before that Linklaters) in 2014

Stephen Gilespie – Finance Partner – Ex A&O

John Markland – Ex Weil Gotshal and Ex Clifford Chance – Private Equity

Mark Misfud – Ex SJ Berwin and EX Slaughters – Funds

Rory Mularkey – Ex A&O – M&A

Neel Sachdev – A rising star in the city – JV and Corp Private Equity

Iain Taplin – Head of Tax – Ex PWC

Richard Watkins – Funds – Ex SJ Berwin

Graham White – Ex Linklaters Ex SJ Berwin Ex Dickson Minto – Corp / private Equity

Chris Colbridge – Litigation - Ex Shearman & Sterling

Rajinder Bassi – Litigation – Ex Shearman


Name some recent key deals or cases that K&E has worked on.


Kirkland & Ellis, A&O, Clifford Chance advise on KKR restructuring deal

31 January 2014 |

Kirkland & Ellis (K&E), Cadwalader Wickersham & Taft, Simpson Thacher & Bartlett, and Allen & Overy (A&O) are part of a 10-strong legal team that has advised on the restructuring of German auto-repair company ATU.

The mammoth deal has left private equity company KKR with losses of around €500m and a minimal stake in ATU following a pre-pack administration, which put it in the hands of lenders including Centerbridge Partners LP and Babson.

K&E restructuring partners Kon Asimacopoulos, Partha Kar and Leo Plank led the deal for ATU, with KKR now set to keep only 10 per cent of the equity after its restructuring. Centerbridge will own the majority.

K&E has acted for KKR in three deals over the past 12 months and the company requested the firm to act for ATU in the deal. It was joined by Hengeler partner Daniel Kress for ATU while Simpson Thacher partner Nicholas Shaw advised KKR.

Cadwalader partners Yushan Ng and Holly Neavill advised Centerbridge along with Goerg partner Christian Baerenz.

Babson and Goldman Sachs’ bondholders turned to Sullivan & Cromwell partners Max Birke and Chris Howard and Clifford Chance partner Adrian Cohen respectively.

Goldman Sachs and Babson have agreed to cut the German company’s debt by more than €600m and to inject €100m in cash for new investments. The company was hit by difficulties at the start of the credit crunch due to falling usage of winter tyres by Germans.

ATU’s existing €450m senior secured notes and unpaid coupons have been exchanged for €157.5m preference shares and 4.85 per cent of the ordinary equity in the specially created English holding company.

Allen & Overy partner Ian Field was also involved, advising the Bank of New York as a trustee along with Global Loan Services and Morgan Stanley.

Morgan Stanley turned to Clifford Chance partner Adrian Cohen while Proskauer partner Hazel Miller stepped in for Global Loan Services.

Kirkland scoops role on first Chinese Icsid arbitration

25 September 2012 | By Joanne Harris

Kirkland & Ellis has been instructed by Chinese insurer, Ping An Life Insurance Company, in a landmark arbitration case against the Kingdom of Belgium, believed to be the first such case to be filed by a Chinese company at the World Bank’s International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (Icsid).

London arbitration head Chris Colbridge is leading the team, which includes associate James Hayton, as Ping An seeks to recoup the losses it sustained following the collapse of Belgian-Dutch bank Fortis.

In 2007 the company invested RMB23.9bn (£2.3bn) in Fortis, which was nationalised a year later. Ping An wrote off RMB22.8bn as a result.

The company held a 5 per cent shareholding in Fortis and had opposed the Belgian government’s 2009 plans to sell off the financial institution to BNP Paribas. Ping An also shelved its proposed acquisition of 50 per cent of Fortis Investment Management.

At the time of the collapse of Fortis, Ping An said in a statement: “The group will further review its overseas investment strategy, procedures and risk control management from the experiences and lessons learnt from the incident.”

The Icsid claim was filed last week (19 September). Belgium

Kirkland partner and judge hired to tackle Fifa corruption allegations

18 July 2012 | By Lucy Burton

Football’s world governing organisation Fifa has instructed Kirkland & Ellis partner Michael Garcia to investigate allegations of corruption alongside German judge Hans-Joachim Eckert.

The move, which was announced at a news conference yesterday, sees the duo co-chair Fifa’s new two-chamber ethics body, with Garcia investigating corruption and Eckert leading the judicial chamber.

Garcia, who has been at the New York office of Kirkland & Ellis since 2009, has prosecuted a number of high-profile cases, including the 1993 terrorist bombing of the World Trade Centre in New York and the 1998 bombing of US embassies in East Africa. His expertise in national security and anti-terrorism led to a role at the US Department of Homeland Security prior to his appointment as United States Attorney between 2005 and 2008.

**Kirkland takes first Cinven role since scooping client from Ashurst **

29 February 2012 | By Joshua Freedman

Kirkland & Ellis’s London team has won its first corporate role acting for private equity house Cinven after winning the client from Ashurst.

Kirkland partners Gavin Gordon and David Arnold led for Cinven and Goldman Sachs Capital Partners on the £1.5bn sale of Swedish tool distributor Ahlsell to CVC Capital Partners.

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer acted for CVC Capital Partners, fielding a team led by corporate partner Christopher Bown.

Cinven was previously an Ashurst client, with corporate partner Bruce Hanton advising it on a number of deals in the 2000s, notably its acquisition of Ahlsell in 2005 - where Gordon was an associate on the transaction.

Gordon and Arnold joined Kirkland from Ashurst in 2010 in a shock raid on the silver circle firm (1 June 2010).

Private equity associates Fatema Orjela and Natalia Prochnicka, leveraged finance partner Stephen Gillespie and associate Sam Norris, DCM partner Ward McKimm and competition partner Shaun Goodman were also on the Kirkland team on the latest deal.

This is the first M&A mandate the US firm has won from Cinven since the duo joined, but City capital markets partner McKimm led a Kirkland team earlier this month on a £304m high-yield offering for the parent company of the Numericable Group, which is controlled by Cinven.

The latest deal follows Linklaters’ success winning Cinven as a fund formation client from Ashurst (25 October 2011).

Freshfields, meanwhile, has a long history advising CVC, for instance on its acquisition of a stake in Virgin Active last year, where partners Chris Bown and Tim Wilmot led for the private equity group.

However, Freshfields financial institutions partner Robert Stirling advised Phoenix Group Holdings, another longstanding client, on its shelved takeover of CVC last year, with the potential target turning to Allen & OVery (28 November 2011).


What do they pay in London?


Assistant Salary Bands (including pay review dates and bonus’s and benefits)

7th Jan 2013 Eve Clarke said they are now paying full new York rates at an exchange rate of 1.64. This makes their NQ salary £97,560.

Kirkland’s happy NQs

6 January 2012

Kirkland & Ellis is known for throwing money at projects - the eight-figure amounts bandied about as the price of its Hong Kong raid on A&O, Latham and Skadden in the summer being just one example - so it’s only natural that the US firm has upped its salary for newly-qualified (NQ) London lawyers.

And it’s not just tinkered with NQ earnings, but well and truly hiked them. As we exclusively revealed yesterday its latest salary review sees the lucky associates take home £97,000, up from £90,000 previously. It puts the ambitious firm third in the London NQ league, behind Bingham McCutchen on £100,000 and Sullivan & Cromwell on £97,500.

They pay full New York rates

These salaries inferred by eve clarke as above



1st Year


2nd Year


3rd Year


4th Year


5th Year


6th Year



Eve Clarke
HR Assistant

30 St Mary Axe, London EC3A 8AF
Tel +44 (0)20 7469 2021, Fax +44 (0)20 7469 2001


Who are the recent departures and arrivals at Kirkland & Ellis?


Kirkland duo McDaid and Dean quit to kickstart Willkie Farr’s City PE practice

14 July 2014 |

Willkie Farr has hired Kirkland & Ellis private equity partner duo Claire McDaid and Matthew Dean to launch its private equity offering in London.

New York qualified Dean has previously worked for clients including Bain Capital, Summit Partners, CapVest, MezzVest and HIG Capital. Meanwhile, McDaid has represented those including Sun Capital, Vista Equity Partners and the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS).

McDaid is to join the firm’s City office imminently, and Dean within the next few weeks.

Willkie Farr’s London chief Peter Burrell said: “Our strategy is to grow our London practice areas around the strengths in our international network,” adding that private equity is the “next obvious move”.

He said that the pair would complement the office’s insurance and restructuring practices, as well as the firm’s private equity and hedge fund offerings in continental Europe and New York.

The hires will call into question Willkie’s relationship with formal alliance partner Dickson Minto – the firm it has turned to for English law advice on private equity deals since 2008.

However, the US firm’s co-chairman Thomas Cerabino insisted: “We value our relationship with Dickson Minto and expect to work closely with them in future”.

Willkie’s latest London additions will bring its tally of London partners up to seven. The office is currently home to two corporate partners, with the remaining trio specialising in corporate crime, tax and restructuring and insolvency.

The office also houses one senior associate and ten associates. It is not currently thought that McDaid and Dean will be joined by any other members of their former Kirkland & Ellis team.

Willkie is the latest US firm to bulk up its private equity practice through lateral hires. It follows in the footsteps of firms including Jones Day, which last year hired former Berwin Leighton Paisner duo Raymond McKeeve and Michael Weir to its private equity offering in the City.

Other notable moves include White & Case’s hire of Linklaters’ sponsor-side rainmakers Ian Bagshaw and Richard Youle (17 October 2013), and Latham & Watkins heist of three Clifford Chance private equity partners: David Walker, Tom Evans and Kem Ihenacho (18 February 2014).

In May, Kirkland & Ellis picked up Weil Gotshal & Manges banking chief Stephen Lucas, who is renowned for his work in the leveraged finance market. He has previously been involved in financing for sponsors including Advent International and the Carlyle Group (20 May 2014).

Will Stephen Lucas be value for money for Kirkland?

26 May 2014 |

Top-dollar lawyer Stephen Lucas will have to bring home the bacon for Kirkland

Is any lawyer worth busting your firm’s compensation structure for? Perhaps one at the pinnacle of their niche in the market.

This is the quandary that faced Weil Gotshal & Manges back in 2011 when it hired Linklaters partner Stephen Lucas to head its City banking practice. And it’s the same one Kirkland & Ellis is likely to have grappled with before its recent raid on Weil for Lucas.

Of course, Lucas’ reputation precedes him. As one recruitment consultant puts it, “he’s the key superstar in finance in London”.

Back in 2011 Weil brought Lucas straight into the upper echelons of its pay structure, with a pay packet of more than $3.9m (£2.3m) – reportedly less than the US management but more than City office key players including London managing partner Mike Francies and co-head of the firm’s global private equity group Marco Compagnoni.

However, as his three-year guarantee came to an end, Lucas settled on an offer from Kirkland, which is believed to have put more than $4m on the table. Some say the total could be twice that.

News of the move came as a shock to many, not only at Weil but at Kirkland too, where a number of partners had no idea high-level negotiations were unfolding.

It is likely that the move is not just about money. Lucas joined Weil with a mandate to build out the borrower practice on the back of its private equity (PE) offering. He did this with some success, advising the likes of Advent on its buyout of KMD and CBPE Capital on its investment in JTC Group.

He hired a couple of partners from Hogan Lovells, Mark Donald and Chris McLaughlin, as well as James Hogben from Ashurst, all with practices straddling lender and borrower financing.

Lucas also nabbed Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer high-yield chief Gil Strauss last year to bulk up City junior debt. And just last month the firm poached Goldman Sachs star Andrew Wilkinson to boost its companies-side business via its restructuring practice.

But it has not all been plain sailing at Weil. The exit of PE partner Mark Soundy, alongside tax partner Sarah Priestley and up-and-coming PE associate Simon Burrows for Shearman & Sterling, left a dent in its sponsor-side practice, diluting the firm’s relationship with the likes of Arle, Bridgepoint and Permira. In response, it is understood that Lucas was encouraged to take on more lender-side work.

Lucas should be a good fit with Kirkland’s borrower-focused practice, which gets a hefty chunk of its mandates from Bain Capital, but also lists 3i and Cinven on its books. He knows Kirkland’s London chief Graham White, having overlapped with the partner for a couple of years at Linklaters.

As the dust settles, Kirkland will hope its newest partner was worth the investment, and that this time Lucas is in for the long haul.

O’Melveny raids Kirkland for private equity hire

21 February 2014 |

US firm O’Melveny and Myers has raided Kirkland & Ellis’s London office for the hire of corporate partner Dan Oates.

Oates, who joined Kirkland & Ellis (K&E) from Slaughter and May in 2006, is the European contact for US-headquartered private equity house Francisco Partners. He was listed in The Lawyer’s Hot 100 in 2013 (28 January 2013).

The move marks another blow for Kirkland & Ellis’s London private equity team, after partner Ross Allardice quit for White & Case last August (6 August 2013), a hire which came less than a month after Kirkland & Ellis lost restructuring partner Graham Lane to Willkie Farr & Gallagher (23 July 2013).

SFO loses bribery head to Kirkland & Ellis

6 September 2012 | By Lucy Burton

The head of the anti-bribery team at the UK Serious Fraud Office (SFO) is leaving to join the London office of Kirkland & Ellis.

Santam Tumani, who was with the SFO for 17 years, has been closely involved in some of the UK’s most complex criminal fraud and corruption matters. Most recently he was the SFO’s joint lead lawyer in the investigation into the alleged manipulation of LIBOR and related interest rates. He will join Kirkland’s white collar practice on 24 September.

“With the addition of Satnam, we will have former senior government enforcement officials and prosecutors across our offices in Europe, Asia and the US, regions that are increasingly active and coordinated in global corruption and bribery investigations that may impact our clients,” said Jeffrey Hammes, the chairman of Kirkland’s global management executive committee in a statement.

Since the Bribery Act came into force last July the SFO has lost a number of prominent lawyers to US firms in the City. They include Vivian Robinson QC, who swapped his role as SFO general counsel to be a partner at McGuire Woods; head of policy Kathleen Harris, who moved to the London office of Arnold & Porter; and the former head of the fraud business area Glyn Powell, who joined the London office of Jones Day.

SFO prosecutor Robert Amaee also quit the agency in January 2011 for US firm Covington & Burling (17 January 2011). Tumani’s hire further underscores the growing demand for law firms to hire those with expertise in the Bribery Act.

“The prosecution of corporate bribery and corruption is a relatively recent development in the UK, and there are few prosecutors with Satnam’s range of experience,” said Chris Colbridge, a partner in Kirkland’s dispute resolution practice in London.

The SFO, which has been impacted by budget cuts in recent years, has faced much criticism in the way it has handled several cases.

Earlier this year the High Court issued a postscript warning to the SFO, saying it did not have the “proper resources, both human and financial” to investigate the Tchenguiz brothers. (31 July 2012)

The long-running case had been embarrassing for the agency. It carried out dawn raids on the brothers in March 2011 as it probed their business dealings following the collapse of Icelandic bank Kaupthing in 2008. In the same month the The Lawyer revealed a management shake-up at the SFO (31 July 2012)

Kirkland partner leaves to launch PE team at Duane Morris

14 May 2012 | By Lucy Burton

US firm Duane Morris is launching a private equity practice in Europe following the hire of Kirkland & Ellis partner Pierfrancesco Carbone.

Pierfrancesco Carbone

Carbone joins Duane Morris from Kirkland’s London office, where he worked as a corporate lawyer for six years after leaving the private equity practice at magic circle firm Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer.

The corporate lawyer, who works on mid-market and large buy-outs, disposals and issuances across Europe, will head the European arm of Duane Morris’s private equity practice from the firm’s City office.

The appointment expands Duane Morris’s private equity group outside the US and Asia, with further hires in the City expected to follow.


Who have I placed at Kirkland & Ellis?


Lizzie Freeth (from Dechert) (Funds)

Paul Rees (from Hogan Lovells) (Corporate)

Piero Carbone (now left I think)