Investment Funds: Private Equity: Fund Formation: Nationwide
Covington & Burling LLPDebevoise & Plimpton LLPFried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLPLinklatersNixon Peabody LLPRopes & Gray LLP
Davis Polk & Wardwell LLPHogan Lovells US LLPKirkland & Ellis LLPProskauer Rose LLPSimpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP
Investment Funds: Private Equity: Fund Formation: Nationwide
- Senior StatesmenR Bradford Malt (Ropes & Gray LLP)
- Band 1Thomas Bell (Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP)Bruce I Ettelson (Kirkland & Ellis LLP)Michael A Gerstenzang (Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP)Michael P Harrell (Debevoise & Plimpton LLP)Yukako Kawata (Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP)Barry M Wolf (Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP)Michael Wolitzer (Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP)
- Band 2Lawrence N Barshay (Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP)Scott O Bowie (Linklaters)Jennifer J Burleigh (Debevoise & Plimpton LLP)Leor Landa (Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP)Marco Masotti (Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP)Robin A Painter (Proskauer Rose LLP)Kenneth I Rosh (Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP)Glenn R Sarno (Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP)David J Schwartz (Debevoise & Plimpton LLP)Rebecca F Silberstein (Debevoise & Plimpton LLP)Louis H Singer (Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP)Edward D Sopher (Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP)Jeffrey E Tabak (Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP)
- Band 3Richard I Ansbacher (Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP)Barton B Clark (Latham & Watkins LLP)Barrie B Covit (Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP)Stephen Culhane (Kaye Scholer LLP)David A Goldstein (DLA Piper LLP (US))Robert M Hirsh (Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP)Charles P Jacobs (Nixon Peabody LLP)Chris P Kallos (Kirkland & Ellis LLP)Scott P Klein (Latham & Watkins LLP)Prakash Mehta (Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP)Larry Jordan Rowe (Ropes & Gray LLP)Georgette A Schaefer (Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP)David A Shevlin (Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP)Roger Singer (Clifford Chance US LLP)David A Winter (Hogan Lovells US LLP)
- Band 4Jennifer Bellah Maguire (Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP)Erica Berthou (Debevoise & Plimpton LLP)Timothy Clark (Sidley Austin LLP)Carl A de Brito (Dechert LLP)Laura S Friedrich (Shearman & Sterling LLP)Shukie Grossman (Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP)John Koeppel (Nixon Peabody LLP)Elizabeth Lenas (Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP)Raj Marphatia (Ropes & Gray LLP)William F McCormack (Ropes & Gray LLP)Craig Medwick (Clifford Chance US LLP)Ann L Milner (Ropes & Gray LLP)Edward D Nelson (Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP)John W Noell (Mayer Brown LLP)John R O'Neil (Kirkland & Ellis LLP)Peter M Phleger (Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP)Kirk A Radke (Kirkland & Ellis LLP)Howard S Rosenblum (DLA Piper LLP (US))Sarah Rothermel (WilmerHale)David I Shapiro (Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP)Joseph A Smith (Schulte Roth & Zabel LLP)Jonathon G Soler (Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP)Joshua H Sternoff (Paul Hastings LLP)Kathleen A Walsh (Latham & Watkins LLP)
- Up and ComingJordan C Murray (Debevoise & Plimpton LLP)Loretta Shaw-Lorello (Covington & Burling LLP)
Investment Funds: Private Equity: Fund Formation: Nationwide
THE FIRM This premier firm retains its top-tier ranking thanks to the unrivaled breadth and depth of its funds practice. Noted for its excellence across a number of industries, notably energy, infrastructure and distressed debt, the team advises a diverse range of clients including boutique firms, investors and sponsors. The group also enjoys a remarkable reputation in emerging markets and is increasingly visible in Latin America. As well as its exceptional experience in fund formation, the firm draws praise for its strength in other practice areas.
Client Service "The lawyers are very client-oriented and have deep expertise in the areas that are important to our business. Their integrated approach truly works as I am always able to get the full resources of the firm."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Michael Harrell cochairs the global funds group and attracts significant praise for his sophisticated practice. As one client enthuses, "he knows the industry inside out and is adept at integrating business and legal concerns." Jennifer Burleigh specializes in alternative assets, particularly private investment funds, and recently advised Odyssey Investment Partners on its $1.5 billion buyout fund. Cochair David Schwartz impresses sources with his global scope and exceptional client service: "He's excellent at recognizing what is reasonable to push for and isn't afraid to roll up his sleeves and get involved." Rebecca Silberstein enjoys an outstanding reputation in the private equity field. As one interviewee remarks, "she has a tremendous understanding of the issues that are unique to this industry and is a standout negotiator." Erica Berthou focuses on open and closed-end funds and is noted for her substantial international practice. Jordan Murray "is exceptionally creative and responsive in resolving any issues that arise," say sources. He advises a raft of leading sponsors and institutional investors such as Clayton, Dubilier & Rice, Providence and Diamond Castle.
THE FIRM Simpson Thacher houses one of the strongest fund formation teams in the market. Thanks to the group's strength in banking and corporate matters, it is well versed in the full spectrum of fund formation work, and much of the team's recent workload has focused on alternative assets, notably real estate, energy, emerging markets and distressed funds. Interviewees appreciate the firm's widespread network of offices, which has expanded markedly at both a domestic and international level.
Commercial Awareness "The team is exceptionally plugged in and commercial. It's obvious that it really understands our business."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Thomas Bell oversees the private funds practice and is widely regarded as an authority in this field. One client hails him as "one of the best lawyers we've ever worked with." Michael Wolitzer represents some of the largest fund sponsors in the country and specializes in all aspects of asset management. Sources describe him as "a tremendous lawyer: dynamic, a good negotiator and an attorney who knows the law by heart." Glenn Sarno receives outstanding market feedback and is highlighted for his technical prowess and ability to articulate the needs of his clients. Barrie Covit is another valued member of the team. He has substantial expertise advising funds sponsors in energy, financial services and secondary markets, both in the USA and worldwide. David Shevlin is well known for his tax expertise, and his clientele includes a diverse range of domestic and international exempt organizations.
THE FIRM This excellent firm has had an extremely busy recent workload, handling a broad range of fund formations, regulatory matters and compliance issues. The team has seen a notable increase in activity in the healthcare, financial services and emerging markets sectors, and it has been building up its practice to represent both sponsors and investors. The group recently advised the Securities Industry & Financial Markets Association on various regulatory issues related to the Volcker Rule.
Commercial Awareness "An extremely impressive team; it has a no-nonsense approach and provides very practical advice."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Standout name Yukako Kawata heads the investment management group and is widely regarded as one of the strongest lawyers in the market. Leor Landa impresses clients as "thoughtful, business-minded and able to come up with creative solutions." He advises a range of private investment funds, including hedge, real estate and hybrid.
THE FIRM This leading practice typically focuses on midmarket representations, although it is equally adept at large-cap fund formations. Energy and infrastructure continue to be notable areas of strength for the team, and it recently advised Energy Capital Partners on its $4.35 billion energy infrastructure fund, one of the largest final closings of last year. Interviewees highlight the team's excellent resources both in the USA and worldwide.
Commercial Awareness "The lawyers have an excellent idea of the market and the various business implications."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Bruce Ettelson leads the funds group out of Chicago and is admired for his "analytical skill and deep understanding of any issue." He has extensive fund formation experience, having represented over 200 private equity funds. Chris Kallos is a talented private equity lawyer with a strong reputation in the midmarket. Clients appreciate his "excellent commercial judgment." Kirk Radke is an expert in both buyouts and fund-raisings. Based in New York, he is renowned for his international scope. The "smart and creative" John O'Neil represents sponsors in forming a variety of funds, including buyout, mezzanine, real estate and fund of funds.
THE FIRM This dynamic investment management group is an established private equity player and often operates at the top of the market. Based in New York, the team offers insight into various products for both sponsors and investors, and increasingly represents high-profile financial institutions. Among its many highlights, the firm recently represented Wellspring in the formation of its fifth fund with $1.2 billion capital commitments.
Sources say: "The team comes up with very creative ideas and offers long-term solutions."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Head of the group Robert Hirsh has significant expertise in the formation and maintenance of buyout, hybrid and venture capital funds. Marco Masotti enjoys a stellar reputation in the market thanks to his in-depth knowledge of the industry. As one client acclaims, "he has a keen business mind and is definitely one of the best fund formation lawyers in New York."
THE FIRM This firm is renowned for its limited partnership representations, although its breadth of practice also attracts a substantial number of sponsors. Clients value the team's domestic coverage, with offices on both the East and West Coasts, as well as its vast international reach. Much of the group's recent workload has centered on fund-raising, restructuring of funds and secondary funds.
Client Service "An extremely hands-on service. The team has a lot of experience and is a great sounding board for our ideas."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Larry Jordan Rowe's practice encompasses the whole range of alternative assets investment matters, encompassing private funds and debt and equity investments. His roster of clients includes Harvard University, Partners Group and Summit Rock. Raj Marphatia impresses clients for bringing "a superb business perspective to issues," while William McCormack is described as a solid fund formation adviser. Ann Milner enters the rankings on the back of tremendous market feedback. She is praised for her expertise in fund structuring and for being "proactive and exceedingly positive to work with." Bradford Malt concentrates on M&A work and advises a raft of private equity clients on their investment activities.
THE FIRM Weil Gotshal's highly integrated private equity practice represents leading figures from both the large and midmarkets. Interviewees rate the team's strength in a variety of industries, such as real estate, energy and technology, and its access to the firm's wider resources. As well as traditional fund formation, the firm has also been involved in a public-private investment program.
KEY INDIVIDUALS Although heavily involved in the internal management of the firm, Barry Wolf continues to be regarded as one of the strongest lawyers in this field. Clients rave about Jeffrey Tabak, especially his ability to "relate the law to the specific issue at hand and always bring a practical solution." Shukie Grossman is well known for his extensive experience representing US and international sponsors, while Jonathon Soler continues to draw admiration for his representation of both sponsors and investors.
THE FIRM Although better known for its hedge fund work, this group is an excellent choice for regulatory and fund maintenance work. A substantial proportion of its assignments originate in New York, although its clients include high-profile US and global names, such as Apollo, Halcyon and Oak Hill. Sources highlight the firm's sterling tax and M&A departments.
KEY INDIVIDUALS The "incredibly articulate" Prakash Mehta handles a vast range of investment management work for prominent fund sponsors and institutional investors.
THE FIRM As well as representing long-term client TPG, Cleary Gottlieb is also famed for undertaking a host of fund formation work for other clients, such as KKR, Deutsche Bank and Credit Suisse. The team is notably strong in regulatory issues and emerging markets, and clients benefit from the firm's expansive global network.
KEY INDIVIDUALS Michael Gerstenzang is widely regarded as "a perennial leader in the private funds space," and earns praise for his dedicated client service. Elizabeth Lenas continues to assist funds focused on the energy and biotech industries, and both she and Gerstenzang have notable expertise in the Asian market.
THE FIRM This international firm covers the full spectrum of fund formation work. It is renowned for its expertise in real estate funds and M&A transactions, as exemplified by its advice to Merrill Lynch on the settlement of claims by fund investors and the sale of its Asian real estate fund and investment management business to The Blackstone Group.
Sources say: "Not only is the team able to offer excellent insight into fund work, it also has a great level of resources throughout the network and across various disciplines."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Roger Singer wins praise for his dedication and commercial acumen. As one client remarks, "he gives 110% and is a true asset to our company." Craig Medwick is "thoughtful, practical and has a great business perspective," according to sources.
THE FIRM This well-respected firm sustains its prolific activity in the market thanks to its excellence in all aspects of hedge funds and fund formation work. Long-time client Goldman Sachs continues to keep the team busy, although it has also attracted a number of new clients, such as JPMorgan and Madison International. The group has handled a number of fund formations in the energy and real estate sectors and continues to be at the cutting edge of secondary funds focused on the technology industry.
Client Service "The lawyers understand our business, so know our sensitivities and make the advice much more informed."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Lawrence Barshay is esteemed for his tremendous hedge funds and private equity experience, and clients praise him as "hard-working, thoughtful and versatile." Practice head Kenneth Rosh has substantial corporate experience, which he utilizes in a vast range of private equity transactions. Clients value his leadership skills and one source describes him as "one of the best lawyers I've ever worked with." Richard Ansbacher is "highly commercial, accessible and very hands-on," say sources, while David Shapiro is noted for his tax and M&A expertise, especially relating to private equity and mezzanine funds.
THE FIRM Working out of Washington, DC, New York and Los Angeles, this firm attracts clients from all over the USA and also boasts a robust international funds practice. The team has seen an increase in transactional activity and continues to handle significant secondary work. The integrated group also offers skilled regulatory and tax advice.
KEY INDIVIDUALS Edward Sopher is highlighted for his detailed knowledge of industry developments and clients appreciate how he "finds solutions that really help our business." He leads the New York team, while the excellent Jennifer Bellah Maguire leads the Los Angeles group. Edward Nelson impresses sources with his effective negotiation skills: "He handles himself exceptionally well with the other side."
THE FIRM This firm has greatly expanded its investment funds group with the opening of a new office in Houston and a number of strategic hirings. Interviewees commend the group's sophisticated advice and long-term perspective to fund formation and organization. The team is strong on the sponsor side and handles a plethora of cross-border investments.
Sources say: "An exceptional transactional practice."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Barton Clark is popular with clients, who appreciate how he "can explain the legal implications of a situation in a way the client can understand." Scott Klein is a talented adviser to many notable global funds and earns praise for being "extraordinarily smart and market-savvy." Kathleen Walsh represents sponsors of US and global funds and also comes recommended for regulatory and compliance work.
THE FIRM This team works closely with its corporate and tax departments to offer clients a highly integrated and personalized service. It is renowned for its international reach and, alongside longtime client KKR, also advises leading global figures such as Cinven and HSBC.
Client Service "The team looks out for us better than we look out for ourselves."
KEY INDIVIDUALS The impressive Scott Bowie combines technical prowess with a client-oriented service. He is well respected for his representation of high-profile global institutions, and sources value his "detailed knowledge of market trends." Sources appreciate Stephen Culhane's industry insight and ability to "think through all the possible outcomes and then proceed in the client's best interests."
THE FIRM This firm is an active player in the infrastructure and real estate industries, and 2010 was no exception. Interviewees rave about the team's substantial global scope and creativity in cross-border investments. As well as traditional fund formation, the group offers an excellent transactional, tax and regulatory practice for established funds.
Sources say: "A highly creative team providing extremely sophisticated advice."
KEY INDIVIDUALS John Noell is a leader of the private investment funds group. Sources praise his "vast knowledge of investor concerns."
THE FIRM Morgan Lewis's multitalented funds team skillfully advises sponsors and investors on the broad spectrum of fund formation work. Limited partnerships, public pension funds and secondary transactions are key focuses of the group, and it also enjoys a significant global presence.
KEY INDIVIDUALS Practice head Louis Singer draws admiration for his extensive limited partnership work and international scope. Georgette Schaefer is a gifted negotiator, say sources: "She is wonderful to work with and popular with both sides of the table." Peter Phleger is another talented member of the team and handles a number of fund formations out of San Francisco.
THE FIRM This firm excels in the full range of fund formation matters and is notably active on the investor side. Much of its recent work has centered on secondary funds and large-cap fund-raising. The team draws on the firm's strength in corporate and ERISA matters, and also benefits from its dedicated fund taxation group.
Commercial Awareness "The team is very user-friendly and gives great guidance on recent developments."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Robin Painter cochairs the investment funds group and complements her private equity expertise with tremendous corporate experience.
THE FIRM This group is best known for its fund formation work in the venture capital space, although it is expanding its private investment practice and advises a number of emerging fund managers. Interviewees appreciate how the team is always up to date on the latest developments in the industry.
KEY INDIVIDUALS Alfred Browne of the Boston-based private equity practice group is a key contact.
THE FIRM This firm acts across a wide range of industries, such as energy, industrial and real estate. It has also seen an increase in matters involving funds focused on bank investments. The team is also adept at advising on tax and regulatory issues.
Client Service "The team is always available to answer our questions and is particularly good at advising us on the new financial rules."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Loretta Shaw-Lorello is excellent at making the client feel at ease and wins praise for her very pragmatic advice.
THE FIRM This fund formation group is part of the firm's corporate and securities department, meaning that clients benefit from its diverse and interdisciplinary service. The team recently represented TrueBridge in the formation of its second fund, focused on venture capital and growth equity managers.
Sources say: "The lawyers have excellent energy and creativity."
KEY INDIVIDUALS The "simply outstanding" Howard Rosenblum spearheads the group. His practice spans traditional fund formation, emerging growth enterprises and operational issues. He is particularly known for his knowledge of the Israeli market. Former White & Case attorney David Goldstein attracts rave reviews for his ability to analyze legal matters from a commercial angle.
THE FIRM Real estate funds continue as a large source of revenue for this firm, although the team also has a wealth of knowledge in private equity and specialty funds. The firm has a presence on both the East and West Coasts and operates in many emerging markets, most notably Latin America.
KEY INDIVIDUALS David Watson leads the investment management group out of Boston.
THE FIRM Hogan Lovells has been building up its private equity practice and is recognized as a growing force in this field. The group has a substantial amount of work originating in Washington, DC, although the firm is also noted for its global reach. With vast amounts of experience in corporate, tax and regulatory aspects of private equity, the team is a strong choice for both sponsors and investors.
Commercial Awareness "The lawyers are very aware of the market; they understand what is going on regarding partnerships and their level of advice is outstanding."
KEY INDIVIDUALS David Winter is an expert in both tax and private equity issues, which allows him to offer a fully rounded perspective of fund formations. Clients also admire his "thoughtful and attentive" service.
THE FIRM This firm has a strong domestic focus and advises major institutional investors, including public pension funds, educational institutions and funds of funds. The interdisciplinary group has experience in a number of areas, including corporate, securities, tax and ERISA, and is building up its expertise in secondary funds and general partnership representations.
Client Service "The firm has an excellent, high-touch client-service approach."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Charles Jacobs has a broad private equity practice and is well known for representing leading public pension funds. John Koeppel chairs the investment funds team and earns admiration for his "tremendous creativity, understanding of the business side of deals and dedication to support the needs of his client, as well as those of the counterparty."
THE FIRM This firm is highly skilled in the formation of real estate funds and frequently advises high-profile institutional and private clients. The team has undertaken a number of US-focused funds of late, although it remains a premier global player. It is representing Apollo Global Real Estate in a $1 billion offering in a hybrid real estate club/fund structure.
Sources say: "A fantastically talented and conscientious team."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Joshua Sternoff "possesses sound judgment and is a skilled negotiator," declares one interviewee. He covers a host of fund formation work, as well as M&A and corporate transactions.
THE FIRM This firm is enjoying a period of growth and, as well as fund formation, has been extremely active in regulatory and midmarket buyouts. The team has also represented emerging markets funds and has a growing presence in the Latin American market.
KEY INDIVIDUALS Monica Arora is a key contact.
Carl de Brito
chairs the fund formation team at Dechert LLP, and clients praise his excellent leadership skills. He advises numerous public and private companies and has recently seen an uptake in regulatory issues and funds focused on energy. Laura Friedrich
is a talented member of the investment funds group at Shearman & Sterling LLP. She is particularly noted for her representations of major financial institutions in international transactions, particularly those involving Latin American elements. Sarah Rothermel
of WilmerHale receives remarkable feedback for her fund formation practice. As one client enthuses, "she understands what is reasonable for all parties, and is extremely pleasant to work with." Joseph Smith
of Schulte Roth & Zabel LLP is a highly diligent fund formation lawyer who wins praise for his pragmatic counsel. He recently arrived from Dewey & LeBoeuf. Timothy Clark
recently joined Sidley Austin LLP from Covington & Burling. He is commended for his commercial awareness and solution-oriented approach. As one client says, "he does a great job of explaining complex legal matters and will try to find a business perspective."
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