Walkers Legal Internship Programme nurtures future talent

Walkers is delighted to announce that its Legal Internship Programme ran for three weeks, from 17 July to 4 August.  Hosting 10 students this summer, the programme was designed to provide these aspiring legal professionals with an opportunity to gain hands-on experience in a leading global law firm.

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Jan Golaszewski joins Walkers team in London as Insolvency & Dispute Resolution partner

Leading offshore Insolvency & Dispute Resolution lawyer Jan Golaszewski has joined Walkers team in London in a lateral partner hire from another offshore law firm in the City.

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What can we learn from recent enforcement actions in the Cayman Islands?

Walkers' regulatory partners Lucy Frew and Ian Mason consider the learning points for financial services providers (FSPs) from recent enforcement actions by Cayman regulatory bodies.

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Walkers announces 29 senior legal and professional services promotions

Walkers, the international financial services firm, is boosting its legal and professional services teams with 28 senior promotions effective from 1 July.

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Walkers (London) acts as Cayman Islands counsel to Haven Cove Capital Management in connection with Fund migration to Cayman

Walkers (London) is pleased to announce that it has acted as Cayman Islands counsel to Haven Cove Capital Management ("Haven Cove") in connection with the migration of their flagship fund, Haven Cove Absolute Return Fund (the "Fund"), to the Cayman Islands. The move was designed to help facilitate access to key investor markets.

Haven Cove originally launched in January 2018 as a self-managed Malta AIF that was delegating portfolio management via a UK MiFID investment manager platform, but Haven Cove now operates as a full scope UK AIFM, which takes on both portfolio and risk management functions and has top up MIFID permissions allowing it to manage third party accounts. The fund specialises in two Systematic Strategies; European Liquid Credit which targets persistent structural dislocations in the credit derivative (CDS) space, and European Liquid Equity, a set of strategies designed to generate uncorrelated & additive returns to the Systematic Credit Strategy.

Ashley Hudd, CEO and Co-Founder of Haven Cove, commented: " We have been experiencing increasing, investor led demand for our Systematic Strategies, particularly in Credit, and in order to access key investor markets the move to Cayman was an easy decision; it is just what investors expect and the tailored regime for alternatives allows us to focus more time on our strategies and the core business."

Walkers London investment funds partner Matt Bloomfield states: "It was terrific to work with Haven Cove and help them get to a place where they can grow AuM and continue to deliver returns to their investors.  We are currently working on a number of fund migrations to Cayman (alongside new launches), which is solid evidence that Cayman remains the dominant jurisdiction globally for alternative investment funds, including hedge funds."

The Walkers (London) team was led by partner Matt Bloomfield with assistance from senior associate, Craig McDermaid.

Walkers Named Best BVI Law Firm 2021 at Who's Who Legal Awards

Walkers is pleased to announce that its BVI office was recently named as the Best BVI Law Firm 2021 at the annual Who's Who Legal 2021 Country and State Awards.

Walkers' BVI office works on the most innovative and significant mandates in the British Virgin Islands. The BVI Insolvency & Dispute Resolution practice acts on many of the major complex cross-border insolvency matters, both contentious and non-contentious, in the BVI and is known for its depth of experience and strength in this area. The team takes a leading role in virtually every major BVI dispute concerning ultra-high-value assets, fraud disputes, and litigation. The reputation of Walkers' transactional practice has been built by the calibre of its institutional clients and top tier instructing counsel from Asia, Europe, Latin America and North America as well as by the quality, and the high-profile, complex and high value nature of the matters on which it works.

Commenting on Walkers' award, BVI Managing Partner Matthew Cowman said "I am delighted that the hard work and expertise of our outstanding office has been recognised by Who's Who Legal. We take great pride in the service we provide and would like to thank our clients for their continued trust in us".

Who’s Who Legal lists only the leading lawyers in each field, based on the findings of an independent six-month research process that encompasses feedback from private practitioners, clients and other experts in the sector.

Walkers Maintains Band 1 Ranking for Offshore in Chambers Asia-Pacific 2022

Walkers is pleased to announce that it has retained its top tier ranking for 'Offshore' legal services in the 2022 Chambers and Partners Asia-Pacific guide. The commentary includes:

"All the Walkers lawyers we deal with in Asia are very practical and pragmatic about the investment fund world.  They respond quickly, thoughtfully, accurately and clearly on all the matters we handle with them."

"The team is very experienced in dealing with complex cross-border insolvency matters involving Hong Kong, China and offshore jurisdictions. The lawyers are very commercially aware and have useful practical insights in relation to the approach of the judges in the various offshore jurisdictions where they practice."

Walkers also received a jurisdiction-leading 10 lawyer rankings, four more rankings than the next Asia-based offshore law firm.

Walkers' Singapore managing partner John Rogers commented: "I am delighted to see that the hard work performed by our practices across the Asian region has been recognised by this leading legal directory."

Hong Kong managing partner Andy Randall said: "We are pleased to see further independent feedback that confirms our position at the very top of the Asia market for offshore legal advice."

Notable practitioners

  • Andy Randall is the managing partner of the Hong Kong office. He is well recognised for his capital markets work, regularly advising on secured note issuances, securitisations and derivative transactions.
  • Denise Wong receives widespread endorsement and stands out for her expertise in private equity and hedge fund matters. Based in Hong Kong, she works with many sponsors on fund formation and investment mandates.
  • James Gaden is a Hong Kong-based lawyer who has an established corporate and investment funds practice. He has extensive experience advising private equity and hedge fund managers on various fund formation, structuring and investment matters. One client notes: "He knows the Japanese market better than any other Cayman lawyers."
  • Joanne Collett earns praise for her expertise in handling insolvency and restructuring mandates. She also advises on shareholder disputes and fund related matters, One client says: "Joanne Collett is a savvy cross-border insolvency and restructuring lawyer who is very hands-on, responsive and commercial."
  • John Rogers is a well-regarded figure in the offshore legal world. He leads the Singapore office as managing partner and offers expert advice on finance and corporate transactions.
  • Kristen Kwok specialises in banking and finance work and has standout experience in Cayman Islands law matters. Based in Hong Kong, she offers notable knowledge in the debt capital markets and structured finance areas. One interviewee says: "She is highly responsive, very business-minded and easy to work with on difficult issues. She understands the business dynamics and culture of PRC clients and can deliver flexible solutions that address the needs of those clients."
  • Laura Rogers is based in Singapore and has a growing reputation in the market. She offers advice on a range of corporate work including private equity, M&A, hedge funds and joint venture matters.
  • Paul Aherne is highly rated for his adept handling of corporate and financing transactions. He is regularly engaged by financial institutions and large corporations. He receives high praise from the market and is noted by one source as a "very good operator."
  • Thomas Granger is based in the Hong Kong office and offers advice on private equity and investment fund matters. He is known for his adept handling of Japan-related work.
  • Tom Pugh joined as a partner in Walkers' Hong Kong office in late 2021, having previously practised at Mayer Brown. He frequently advises creditors with regards to debtor negotiations, liquidations, restructurings and recovery matters. He comes recommended for his handling of multi-jurisdictional matters.

Walkers Scoops Asset Recovery and Restructuring & Insolvency Awards at 2021 Who's Who Legal Awards

Walkers is pleased to announce that its Global Insolvency & Dispute Resolution ("IDR") Group has won two awards at the recent 2021 Who's Who Legal Awards. Competing in a field of top tier international law firms (both onshore and offshore), Walkers was awarded the trophies for Asset Recovery Law Firm of the Year and Restructuring & Insolvency Law Firm of the Year.

These accolades come on the back of Walkers securing a top ten ranking for restructuring and insolvency legal services for the first time in the latest Global Restructuring Review Top 30 list 2021, placing Walkers in the law firm global elite.

Cayman Islands partner Neil Lupton commented: "I am delighted that our hard working and responsive team has been recognised by peers and the market in this manner. We pride ourselves on our time-sensitive global footprint and are proud to represent many of the largest ongoing cross border matters in the courts."

Walkers' Global IDR group is internationally recognised as having the premier restructuring, insolvency and corporate recovery team amongst the offshore magic circle law firms. Walkers has a dedicated restructuring and insolvency practice in each of its ten offices in key locations around the world which offer Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Guernsey, Irish and Jersey legal advice on all aspects of restructuring, insolvency, corporate recovery, litigation and dispute resolution. With the most ranked offshore restructuring and insolvency lawyers, Walkers frequently plays a leading role in the most complex, ground breaking, cross-border cases that involve offshore jurisdictions. Walkers' IDR Group specialises in complex cross-border restructurings, contentious and non-contentious insolvencies, insolvency and high value litigation and distressed situations.

Colette Wilkins QC also notes: "We are very grateful to our clients for their instructions and their trust in us. We have had some great successes in recent years and we are delighted to see the strength of our team recognised by marquee market commentators like Who's Who Legal."

Who’s Who Legal lists only the leading lawyers in each field, based on the findings of an independent six-month research process that encompasses feedback from private practitioners, clients and other experts in the sector.

Walkers Maintains Band 1 Offshore FinTech Ranking

Walkers is pleased to announce it has retained its Band 1 ranking in the second annual Chambers and Partners Offshore FinTech directory, adding to its existing collection of top-ranked practices. Walkers' Irish office was also included in the rankings for FinTech legal services, highlighting the firm's expansive global footprint in financial technologies, deep bench of experts and book of established FinTech clients.

Walkers' Global FinTech Group (the "Group") officially formed in 2017, though the multi-disciplinary team has been working with FinTech clients for many years in what is believed to be the longest established offshore FinTech practice. Today, the Group maintains an offshore presence in Bermuda, the British Virgin Islands, the Cayman Islands, the Channel Islands and London as well as an onshore presence in Dublin, Ireland.

In the guide, Cayman Islands partner Melissa Lim received a Band 1 lawyer ranking for her practice. Additionally, Ireland partner Niall Esler is also ranked in the guide for his work in the Irish Fintech market.

Walkers' Global FinTech Group is diverse in both the make-up of the team and in the type of FinTech work it does and the clients it represents. The market-leading team is an integral member of the Cayman Islands BlockChain Association, the Cayman Islands Fintech legislative drafting committee, the Bermuda Business Development Agency's Technology Sub-committee, the Jersey Digital Assets Working Group and other governmental steering groups in the Channel Islands, Bermuda and the BVI. Walkers' unique vantage point has allowed the Group to combine industry experience in FinTech's core sectors with a specialist legal expertise, to create an offshore market-leading FinTech team. With experts from Asia, the Americas, Europe and the Middle East, Walkers understands that innovative businesses think beyond borders.

Natalie Neto, Bermuda partner and co-head of the FinTech group, celebrated the rankings by stating: "We are delighted to retain our Band 1 ranking in this year's iteration of the Chambers and Partners Fintech Guide. Across the globe, Walkers represents some of the most active and innovative entities in the sector and we are very grateful for their trust in us and look forward to the opportunities 2022 holds."

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