edwards gibson informed connections
020 7153 4903

Lateral Partner Moves in London


Click here for Partner Moves March - April 2018


Welcome to the latest round-up of lateral partner moves in the legal market from Edwards Gibson; where we look back at announced partner-level recruitment activity in London over the past two months and give you a ‘who’s moved where’ update.


In all, there was a total of 65 lateral partner moves announced in this round-up – 33% fewer than the same period last year and 14% fewer than the statistical average for the preceding five year period. This comes on the back of the 22% fall we reported in our last edition. Overall, in the first four months of 2018, the number of lateral partner moves in London is down 27% on 2017 – a drop only partially explained by the 2017 figures being artificially buoyed by the collapse of King & Wood Mallesons’ European verein.


Of note in this edition:

  • A three partner move, including a former Head of Real Estate, from DLA Piper, linked to a much larger 50 lawyer ($100 million revenue) team move in the USA, launches a real estate offering by McDermott Will & Emery in London.


  • No fewer than five partner hires –  nearly 8% of all recorded moves - were in White Collar Crime with two firms: Macfarlanes, and US firm Greenberg Traurig, launching their European offerings with significant named partners.


  • 20% of all recorded moves were laterals moving for partnership - with Kirkland & Ellis making three such acquisitions. Elsewhere, two partners moved from senior in-house roles into partnership.  


Top partner recruiters in London March-April 2018:

  •     Baker McKenzie: 3
  •     Druces: 3
  •     Kirkland & Ellis: 3
  •     McDermott Will & Emery: 3


Whilst the number of moves in 2018 is sharply down on the (admittedly record number) we saw last year, it is too soon to determine if this is part of a wider slowdown. Nevertheless, it is interesting to note that, so established has the trend for lateral hiring in London become, that even when hitherto ultra-conservative lateral hirers such as Allen & Overy and Macfarlanes nab two partners apiece, the lack of novelty means that it no longer invokes quite the same comment it once would.


Please do not hesitate to contact us if you would like to discuss this article or any other aspect of the market in more depth.


The Edwards Gibson Team  


+ 44 (0) 207153 4903





Previous Issues:

Partner Moves January - February 2018

Partner Moves November - December 2017

Partner Moves September - October 2017

Partner Moves July - August 2017

Partner Moves May - June 2017

Partner Moves March - April 2017

Partner Moves January - February 2017



Partner Moves November - December 2016

Partner Moves September - October 2016 

Partner Moves July - August 2016 

Partner Moves May - June 2016

Partner Moves March - April 2016

Partner Moves January - February 2016



Partner Moves November - December 2015

Partner Moves September - October 2015

Partner Moves July - August 2015

Partner Moves May - June 2015

Partner Moves March - April 2015

Partner Moves January - February 2015



Partner Moves November - December 2014

Partner Moves September - October 2014

Partner Moves July - August 2014

Partner Moves May - June 2014

Partner Moves March - April 2014

Partner Moves January - February 2014



Partner Moves November - December 2013

Partner Moves Sep - Oct 2013

Partner Moves July - August 2013

Partner Moves May - June 2013 

Partner Moves March - April 2013

Partner Moves January - February 2013



Partner Moves November - December 2012

Partner Moves September - October 2012

Partner Moves July - August 2012

Partner Moves May - June 2012

Partner Moves March - April 2012

Partner Moves January - February 2012



Partner Moves November - December 2011

Partner Moves September - October 2011

Partner Moves July - August 2011

Partner Moves May - June 2011 

Partner Moves March - April 2011

Partner Moves January - February 2011


For further information, or to discuss current trends in lateral partner recruitment, please speak to one of the Edwards Gibson consultants.




< Back

Articles by Scott Gibson

news & events

  • March/April 2018 round up of lateral partner moves in London more
  • February 2018: EG Director Scott Gibson comments on Women Deal Stars – Legal Business more
  • April 2018: EG sponsors 'Real Estate Team of the Year' Award at the Legal Business Awards 2018 more


  • Competency Based Interviews - an overview more
  • FAQs about legal recruiting more
  • The partnership track and moving for immediate partnership more