Walkers (Bermuda) Limited Celebrates Five Years

Walkers (Bermuda) Limited ("Walkers") is pleased to celebrate the five year anniversary of its Bermudian operations in Hamilton, Bermuda. Having opened its doors as Taylors in association with Walkers on 4 January 2016, Walkers immediately offered a full service commercial practice and grew to seven lawyers in just nine months. Five years on, Walkers currently has seven partners and 12 associates in Bermuda, excluding a number of staff on international secondment, and is driving myriad instructions through the jurisdiction. Along with its affiliated professional services offering, Walkers Corporate (Bermuda) Limited, Walkers now employs 40 staff on Island.

Soon after opening, accolades for Walkers started to arrive. In 2018, Walkers was one of 43 global law firms included in IFLR's Firms to Watch 2018. "Firms to Watch" is a spin-off supplement from the IFLR1000, the guide to the world's leading financial law firms.

In 2018, Walkers expanded its service offerings by solidifying its FinTech capabilities as its staff members worked with the government to steer policy and push Bermuda into the centre of the digital assets debate. In 2019 Walkers bolstered its Regulatory & Risk Advisory and (Re)Insurance & ILS practices and added Bermudian compliance services in 2020. Since then, Walkers has regularly been ranked in IFLR1000, Chambers and Partners and the Legal 500.

"From the beginning, our Bermuda office aimed to leverage Walkers' global relationships to attract the best blue chip businesses to the jurisdiction. Our team has worked tirelessly to promote, attract and retain some of the world's most prominent businesses and I am proud to say that we achieved those aims in a remarkably swift fashion," commented Managing Partner Kevin Taylor.

Business in Bermuda

During the height of the Covid-19 pandemic, advising both Norwegian Cruise Lines and the lenders to Carnival Cruises, Walkers' Finance & Corporate practice acted on an aggregate of US$8.6 billion worth of financings. Walkers' FinTech team acted on a world first as it provided Bermuda counsel to Gemini Trust Company, a cryptocurrency exchange and custodian, on the launch of its captive insurance company, Nakamoto, Ltd - the first captive to insure crypto custody. Closer to home, Walkers acted as Bermuda counsel to Saturn Power group in relation to the development of a solar-powered electricity generation plant, built on the land known as the “finger” at Bermuda's airport. In April 2020 Saturn was approved to become the first independent power producer on the island.

Working hand in glove with Walkers' Hong Kong office, which is fast becoming an important pipeline of work for Bermuda, Walkers acted as both Bermuda and BVI counsel to New World Development ("NWD") in its acquisition of FTLife Insurance from the JD Group in a US$2.75 billion deal, one of the top five insurance M&As ever in Hong Kong.

"Bermuda is an integral component in international business and a jurisdiction which compliments our market leading offices in the Asia-Pacific region and the Americas. I am delighted to celebrate five years with our Bermuda team," said Global Managing Partner Ingrid Pierce.

The Future of Bermuda

From inception, it was always managing partner Kevin Taylor's intention to create overseas secondment opportunities for Bermudian lawyers. He believes this is both beneficial to the individual, in terms of exposure to markets such as London, Hong Kong and Singapore, and for Bermuda, as a jurisdiction, via increased representation in major financial centres. Walkers has placed two associates in Walkers' Hong Kong office with more opportunities to follow.

Looking to the future, Walkers initiated a scholarship support programme in 2016, making its first grant that year, and began its pupillage program in 2018. Walkers has implemented a comprehensive 12 months structured training program ensuring that pupils are provided with the highest level of practical, technical and soft skill training in all areas of the Firm's practice.

In 2020, Walkers welcomed newly admitted associate Malacia Madden to its Corporate, Finance, Funds & Insurance practice group, following the successful completion of her training with the firm. Walkers currently has two pupils, Ashley Fubler and Izabella Arnold, undergoing their legal training.

"Part of the Walkers ethos, regardless of location, is investing in and nurturing home-grown talent to provide young, aspiring attorneys with the opportunity to practice law in the world's leading and most exciting markets. I am very pleased with our record to date but we will always look to expand and improve our development programmes to aid the future of Bermuda," said partner Jonathan Betts.

BERMUDA
Kevin TaylorManaging PartnerT +1 441 242 1510kevin.taylor@walkersglobal.com
Jonathan BettsPartnerT +1 441 242 1511jonathan.betts@walkersglobal.com

CAYMAN ISLANDS
Ingrid Pierce Global Managing PartnerT +1 345 814 4667ingrid.pierce@walkersglobal.com