Revolving doors: Swings and roundabouts for Squires and Addleshaws as 2Birds fills real estate gap

City hires picked up pace again last week after a fallow patch as leading firms made prominent additions to a number of key practice areas. Squire Patton Boggs hired to its private equity practice while Bird & Bird and Addleshaw Goddard strengthened their real estate benches.

Squires added to its global corporate practice in London with the hire of Stephen Ball. He joined the firm’s international private equity team as a partner from KPMG where he served as chief executive and vice chairman. Ball advises on financial services, risk, strategy and corporate governance for global banks, companies, private equity firms, hedge funds and governments.

Squires’ European managing partner Jonathan Jones commented: ‘Stephen’s reputation precedes him, as a widely respected, highly trusted advisor on business strategy and decision-making at the highest level. He brings with him years of experience, in terms of personally leading global teams and firms and of advising international businesses – global private equity houses, major corporates, banks and financial institutions – on the most complex of matters.’

Bird & Bird meanwhile added Addleshaws partner James Salford to its real estate finance practice in London. Salford advises lenders and borrowers on debt and also reviews and negotiates hotel operating agreements.

Co-head of the retail & consumer sector group at Bird & Bird Mark Abell told Legal Business: ‘We decided to go the market and bring someone with the right seniority and right level of skills into the team and I think we’ve made an exceptionally strong recruitment. It’s not one of those roulette hires- there’s a real need and real opportunities. In the hotel sector we are growing at a pretty phenomenal pace and the main strategic goal is to fulfil that potential. There’s plenty of opportunities that are there for the taking.’

To mitigate the loss, Addleshaws hired Squires partner Rachel Orton to its real estate team in London. Orton acts for investors, developers and finance clients on transactions in the healthcare, retirement living and build-to-rent sectors.

Head of Addleshaws real estate division Adrian Collins commented: ‘Senior living and healthcare within the BTR sector is expanding rapidly, with an ageing population and longer life expectancy driving the requirement. Rachel is a fantastic addition to the team not only as her clients provide existing synergies with our real estate offering, but she can draw on strong support from our market leading construction and infrastructure teams.’

Orton told Legal Business: ‘I am excited to be joining a firm with such a high calibre real estate team as Addleshaw Goddard. In light of their existing impressive credentials in the build-to-rent sector and enthusiasm for and willingness to invest in the senior living and extra care sector, Addleshaw Goddard was an obvious choice for me.’

Orton’s hire follows the recent addition of former Linklaters real estate disputes head Frances Richardson to Addleshaws’ real estate team.

Elsewhere, Dentons recruited partner Shane O’Donnell to its corporate team in Dublin. O’Donnell joined the firm from William Fry where he has been head of corporate for the last five years. He advises leading domestic and international corporations, financial institutions and government organisations on mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, fundraisings and take-private transactions.

Dentons managing partner in Ireland Eavan Saunders said: ‘Attracting such a high calibre partner demonstrates the ambitions we have for the Dublin office. Shane is an acknowledged leader in his field and will be a tremendous addition to the Dentons offering in Ireland.’

Finally, in Los Angeles, Simpson Thacher & Bartlett made a rare lateral play with the additions of Gregory Klein and Michael Kaplan from Irell & Manella to its M&A practice.

Klein and Kaplan are experienced in private equity transactions, mergers and acquisitions, securities offerings and related corporate matters, as well as advising venture investors, hedge funds and other institutional money managers, founders, startups and early-stage companies on investments, debt and equity financings and governance issues.

Chairman of Simpson Thacher’s executive committee Bill Dougherty commented: ‘Their addition will further enhance our ability to meet our clients’ needs both in California and beyond. Their experience advising on mergers and acquisitions, particularly in the middle-market, as well as on growth equity investments, is an ideal complement to our strength in private equity across the board.’

This article first appeared on Legal Business.