Proskauer continues private funds group growth

The law firm hired a former in-house VC general counsel and a law firm partner for its private funds group.

Law firm Proskauer continued to grow its private funds group, adding two new partners, Jennifer Crystal and Jennifer Dunn.

Both join the firm’s New York office.

Monica Arora, co-head of the firm’s private funds group said the platform is growing, especially in New York. She said the private credit space has been very active the last few years and is a strategic growth area for the firm.

Proskauer is also looking to increase its secondaries expertise.

“There has been a lot of activity with the GP-led secondaries, so we will continue to look for opportunities to grow this practice to meet the needs of our clients,” Arora said.

Crystal was previously general counsel at venture capital firm WndrCo Capital Management. Crystal has more than 15 years of legal experience, with particular expertise in private credit and venture capital funds.

Jennifer Crystal

At WndrCo, Crystal oversaw and advised on all legal activities of the technology focused firm, including fund formation and fundraising, firm operations, structuring and execution of investments and divestitures, portfolio company management and risk assessment.

Prior to her role at WndrCo, Crystal spent nine years with global asset manager PineBridge Investments, where she was the lead lawyer responsible for its U.S. alternatives platform, including direct private credit and structured capital, direct private equity and primary and secondary fund of fund investments. Earlier in her career, Crystal was an associate at Willkie Farr & Gallagher, focused on private equity, M&A and general corporate law matters.

Credit and hedge fund specialist Dunn joins from Schulte Roth & Zabel, where she was most recently a partner.

Jennifer Dunn

Dunn advises hedge funds, closed-end funds (including debt funds), hybrid funds, co-investment platforms and investment advisers in connection on structuring, formation and ongoing operational needs, general securities law matters and regulatory and compliance issues.

Crystal and Dunn are the latest credit-focused private funds partners to join Proskauer since the start of the year. The firm hired James Oussedik as a partner and co-lead the firm’s global credit funds and sovereign wealth funds initiatives in London in February.

Last year, the firm hired Matthew Kerfoot as partner at the firm to advise clients on preferred equity deals, NAV loans and collateralized fund obligations.

Arora said the firm is not focusing on any specific geographies when growing its practice, but added the U.S. and Europe, particularly London, “have seen a lot of activity in the practice areas we’re focusing on.”

“Our recent hires are part of a strategic plan to focus particular areas and where we’re going to try to bring on more people to help us out,” Arora noted. “We have a strategic desire to grow and we will keep looking for the right people to build out our practices and our team.”