Ropes & Gray launches PE-focused London office

The firm has hired three partners from White & Case to start the private equity- and debt-focused office, which will open in January 2010.

Ropes & Gray has hired Maurice Allen and Michael Goetz to launch its London office in January 2010. The two were formerly co-heads of the banking and capital markets practice groups at White & Case. 

Ropes & Gray’s London office will focus on private equity and debt. Allen and Goetz previously led the growth of White & Case’s London office from 65 to 400 attorneys. Allen has practiced law for more than 25 years in the London finance market, focusing on complex transactions and cross-border financings. Goetz represents clients in leveraged lending and acquisition finance matters, among other complex transactions. He also has experience in bankruptcies and business reorganisations. 

The firm has also brought on Jonathan Bloom from White & Case’s high-yield practice to bolster the London team. Although part of White & Case’s London office, the American Bloom also brings expertise in US securities laws and in structuring and negotiating cross-border Rule 144A and Regulation S high-yield debt offerings and restructurings, Ropes & Gray said in a statement.

Two of the firm’s senior US partners, David Chapin and Newcomb Stillwell, will relocate to London as well. Stillwell was formerly the head of Ropes & Gray’s private equity practice group.

Ropes & Gray’s private equity clients include 11 of the 25 so-called “mega funds” and more than 20 mid-market firms that do transactions in the $100 million to $1 billion range, according to the firm. In the past two years, Ropes & Gray has opened offices in Tokyo, Hong Kong and Chicago.