United States > Investment fund formation and management > Private equity funds > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings
Index of tables
Private equity funds
- John Ayer - Ropes & Gray LLP
Thomas Bell -
Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP
- Erica Berthou - Debevoise & Plimpton LLP
Barrie Covit -
Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP
- Bruce Ettelson - Kirkland & Ellis LLP
Michael Gerstenzang -
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP
Yukako Kawata -
Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP
Leor Landa -
Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP
- Marco Masotti - Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP
- Robin Painter - Proskauer Rose LLP
- David Schwartz - Debevoise & Plimpton LLP
- Louis Singer - Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP
Michael Wolitzer -
Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP
- Andrew Wright - Kirkland & Ellis LLP
Debevoise & Plimpton LLP is ‘a leader in the private equity funds arena, and with good reason; it knows the territory from top to bottom’. The firm’s global practice serves a wide range of US and non-US clients including newly established managers, independent boutiques, private equity arms of insurance companies and financial institutions, as well as institutional and individual investment professionals. Its longstanding track record in the private funds arena has seen it act for sponsors and investors on more than 1900 private equity funds worldwide with a combined capital of over $2 trillion. Team head Erica Berthou is ‘one of the best private equity funds lawyers in the business’; her expertise spans formation, expansion and restructuring advice for investment managers, fund structuring and day-to-day operational advice, and assistance with complex carried interest arrangements and co-investment vehicles. The group also handles tax, ERISA and regulatory and compliance issues. In 2015, David Schwartz led the advice to Morgan Stanley on its formation of a $4bn global infrastructure fund. The group has been particularly active in the secondary market; in an illustration of its leading capability in this space, Jordan Murray took the lead on Liberty Mutual’s disposal of two separate portfolios of 50 private equity fund interests worth approximately $225m. Jonathan Adler, Andrew Ahern, Michael Harrell, Rebecca Silberstein and Kenneth Berman are also recommended. Matthew Dickman joined Kirkland & Ellis LLP.
‘A top-flight’ firm, Kirkland & Ellis LLP has ‘unmatched bench strength and experience’, and is praised for its ‘market knowledge and focus on client service’. Its impressive client roster includes some of the largest and most prominent global entities in the private equity space, such as Warburg Pincus, 3G Capital and The Carlyle Group. The firm also advises institutional investors on their multimillion-dollar investments into a wide range of funds. In 2015, practice head John O’Neil assisted Rhône Group with the formation and fundraising of flagship fund Rhône Partners V. Other names to note include Daniel Lavon-Krein, who ‘brings a depth of knowledge and experience to every situation’, the ‘smart and decisive’ Bruce Ettelson, and Nadia Murad (‘you could not hire a more personable or intelligent fund formation attorney’). Andrew Wright is an expert in the formation of complex LBO and hybrid funds, while Michael Belsley leads the firm’s secondary practice. Scott Moehrke, Kelly Ryan, John Muno and Sarah Kirson are also recommended. In 2015, the practice was bolstered by the arrivals of David Lenzi and Martin Voelker from Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP, and Matthew Dickman from Debevoise & Plimpton LLP.
Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP is ‘always responsive and employs best-in-class professionals; its depth of experience, consistency and bench strength is probably the best that we have seen in the industry’. Glenn Sarno ‘stands out from the crowd for his in-depth, practical knowledge’. The group has a particularly strong track record acting for some of the largest and most prominent sponsor clients including Carlyle Group, KKR and Pantheon Ventures, and has advised on multiple fundraisings for Blackstone. In a recent highlight, Jonathan Karen led the advice on the $18bn Blackstone Capital Partners VII fund, which closed in 2015. Barrie Covit acted as lead adviser on the $10bn closing of Lexington Capital Partners VIII. In addition to its work on mega-funds, it also assists asset managers of various other shapes and sizes across a wide spectrum of investment strategies, including distressed debt, mezzanine, energy and infrastructure. Other key strengths include alternative asset manager M&A and separately managed accounts. Michael Wolitzer regularly acts for sponsors in fund formation and fundraising matters, as well as providing advice on private fund interests and fund manager M&A. Thomas Bell acts for clients such as CVC Capital Partners and Aquiline Capital Partners across a wide range of investment strategies. Olga Gutman and Michael Nooney are also recommended.
In addition to its strong US presence, Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP’s practice leverages the firm’s wider global footprint to extend its coverage across Europe, Asia and Latin America. The group acts for some of the largest and most active global investment managers in the private equity space, including Blackstone, KKR, Silver Point Capital and Carlyle Group. Its diverse practice not only covers the structuring and formation of complex and bespoke funds, but also their follow-on investments, exits, regulatory issues, and fund manager M&A. The firm also advises on other matters relevant to private equity funds and their managers, such as tax and real estate, and also acts for a number of limited partner clients. Elizabeth Lenas is leading the team’s advice to TPG on the formation of its seventh flagship buyout fund, TPG Partners VII, and on fundraising for TPG Growth III. Other key figures include Robert Raymond, whose fund formation expertise real estate and buyout funds, and real estate practitioner Michael Gerstenzang, who has a notable track record acting for funds and sponsors. Adrian Leipsic was promoted to partner in 2015, while Joshua Frankel was elected as senior attorney.
Kenneth Rosh leads the team at Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP, which attracts praise for its ‘legal, technical and advisory capabilities’, and for its ability to ‘spot issues that go beyond the four corners of a document’. The practice advises some of the largest sponsors, including BlackRock, Fortress and Goldman Sachs, on their most sophisticated fund complexes. Rosh (‘the ultimate results-focused lawyer’) and Richard Ansbacher each have 25 years of experience in the private equity funds industry, and the practice’s diverse workload ranges from flagship fund formations and fund restructurings, to managing investments into funds and providing US and cross-border regulatory advice. Other recommended figures include Jonathan Adler (‘very knowledgeable of securities laws, private fund formation and offerings’), Rebecca Zelenka, Jeffrey Ross and David Shapiro. Bolstering the firm’s cross-border capabilities, Mark Mifsud, Kate Downey and Alexandra Conroy joined the London office from Kirkland & Ellis International LLP, while Gregg Beechey joined from King & Wood Mallesons.
David Watson leads Goodwin Procter LLP’s bi-coastal practice, which handles a wide range of domestic and international fund types, with a particularly strong reputation in US and offshore real estate funds ranging in size from less than $100m to more than $4bn. Watson and Neal Sandford are advising BlueVista on the formation of its fourth real estate fund, the $400m Sponsor Equity Fund IV. The practice is also highly active in the venture capital arena, where the firm acts for more than 1200 emerging companies and entrepreneurs, as well as 200 venture capital and private equity firms. In 2015, Thomas Beaudoin assisted Israeli firm Fortissimo Capital with the fund raising for a $470m special situations and growth capital fund. Buyout funds are another strong suit. Jonathan Axelrad, James Donohue and Paul Verbesey are also recommended.
Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP ‘stands toe to toe with its peers in the industry’ and ‘sets the standard in terms of creativity, excellence in people, timeliness and diligence’. Its focus on high-end, complex matters makes it a natural choice for some of the market’s largest and most established sponsors, such as Apollo Global Management, KKR and Oaktree. In an illustration of its outstanding track record in the private equity arena, 2015 saw Udi Grofman act for Blackstone on the closing of its $3.3bn private equity-styled Strategic Capital permanent duration fund. Marco Masotti (whose ‘calm demeanour, depth of experience and creative approach to problem-solving make him a rare talent’) worked alongside Grofman and Michael Hong on Apollo Global Management’s $1bn upsizing to its strategic partnership with Texas Retirement System. The team also acts for middle-market players and activist managers. Amran Hussein is a ‘very hardworking lawyer’ with ‘an immense depth of knowledge when it comes to underlying fund documentation and the fundraising marketplace’.
Proskauer Rose LLP, which ‘excels in market knowledge, price-value and legal substance’, provides a full service to more than 300 general partner clients and over 100 limited partner clients globally. On the sponsor side, its team has a 20-year track record of advising clients in the US, UK and globally on a wide range of fund types, including buyout, venture capital and real estate funds. Its expertise includes fund formation and structuring, fund investments, co-investments, secondary transactions and fund restructurings. Howard Beber, who has ‘strong industry knowledge’, jointly leads the team with Sean Hill, Robin Painter and David Tegeler. Highlights included acting for New Enterprise Associates on the closing of a $3.1bn venture capital fund, representing one of the largest venture funds ever raised. The firm’s cross-border capabilities were recently bolstered by the recruitment of Niamh Curry, who joined the New York office, and Bruno Bertrand-Delfau, who moved to the London office. Both joined from Baker McKenzie LLP. Matthew McBride has been promoted to senior counsel.
Over the last five years, Ropes & Gray LLP has handled the formation of more than 500 funds for some of the most prominent investment managers in the private equity industry. Over the same period, the practice has advised investor clients such as endowments and fund-of-funds, on their investments, including assisting Harvard University with structuring vehicles for co-investment and direct investment opportunities. On the sponsor side, the team is particularly active in regulatory issues involving the requirement to register under the Investment Advisers Act, as well as on day-to-day compliance issues and counselling clients on preparing for SEC examinations. Boston-based John Ayer and London-based Matthew Judd jointly lead the team, which includes Raj Marphatia, Debra Lussier, Larry Rowe and Matthew Posthuma.
Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP’s presence in the US, Europe and Asia enables it to field a team that can provide extensive cross-border coverage to US and non-US sponsors ranging from first-time managers to some of the largest institutions raising mega-funds. In addition to handling the formation and operation of funds, the group also assists sponsors with organising and operating their investment firm businesses, advises institutional investors on strategic investments, and rounds out its practice with strong tax and regulatory capabilities. In 2015, US practice head Jonathon Soler and senior associate Stephanie Srulowitz acted for American Securities in the formation of its $5bn fund, American Securities Partners VII. In another highlight, David Kreisler (who moved to Sidley Austin LLP post publication) advised Quantum Energy Partners on the formation of Quantum Energy Partners VI, its sixth fund with a total of $4.5bn in capital commitments. Other clients include Perella Weinberg, Brookfield Asset Management and WL Ross & Co. Andrew Chizzik, Jeffrey Tabak and Barry Wolf are other key names. Shukie Grossman joined Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP.
In addition to its sizeable US-based fund formation capability, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP has fund formation experts in London, Hong Kong and Singapore, giving it ample bench strength to cover the full spectrum of investment management issues for global clients such as Apollo Global Management, Carlyle Group and Castlelake. In addition to handling the formation, operation and restructuring of funds across a variety of investment strategies, the team’s other key strengths include negotiating seed investments, advising on AIFMD and UCITS issues, handling regulatory investigations and enforcement matters, and advising on secondary transactions. Fadi Samman and counsel Angela Adams assisted GE Capital with the $1.3bn sale of more than 400 private equity buyout, venture capital and other private fund interests to Ardian. In another highlight, Eliot Raffkind was lead adviser to Fir Tree Partners in the formation of a $650m solar and renewable energy fund. Stephen Vine and Prakash Mehta jointly lead the team, which includes Kelli Moll and tax experts Patrick Fenn and Stuart Leblang.
Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP’s team has a longstanding track record in fund formation as well as wide-ranging transactional capabilities, which cover negotiating financing for portfolio companies, shareholder and co-investment arrangements, and fund-related acquisitions and disposals. Its practitioners also handle a range of regulatory issues; Yukako Kawata and Leor Landa are advising clients including Avenue Capital and Credit Suisse on matters arising from the Dodd-Frank Act and Consumer Protection Act. On the fund formation front, the pair also advised RoundTable Healthcare Partners on the formation of and sale of LP interests in Equity Fund IV and Capital Fund III, which raised an aggregate total of $850m in capital commitments. Nora Jordan’s workload includes advising asset managers on SEC investigations, as well as on acquisitions and fund manager structures.
Latham & Watkins LLP’s ‘responsive team’ has ‘a lot of depth’. Its experience spans acting for both sponsors and investors globally, ranging from large managers such as Riverstone Holdings and Carlyle Group, as well as mid-market funds targeting specific geographic regions or industries, such as EMX Capital and VMG Partners. Andrea Schwartzman worked alongside Alan Van Dyke in assisting Linzor Capital Partners with forming Linzor Capital Partners III, a $621m fund pursuing equity and equity-related investments in middle-market companies in Latin America. Barton Clark is experienced in counselling US and non-US private equity funds and their sponsors on fund formation, portfolio investments, and regulatory issues arising from the Investment Advisers Act and Investment Company Act. Clark is global co-chair of the practice along with Kathleen Walsh and Scott Klein. Michael Chiswick-Patterson joined Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati.
‘A top-notch firm’, Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP has a broad private equity funds practice that acts for global financial institutions in the formation and management of funds, as well as assisting with their investment strategies and advising on secondary market transactions. It counsels five of the six largest private equity fund of funds by assets under management, including JPMorgan Asset Management and Pantheon Ventures. On the investor side, it advises more than 70 institutional investors on their primary investments, co-investments and secondary investments. Clients include public pension plans and sovereign wealth funds. Illustrative of the global nature of the practice, Louis Singer and Dubai-based Ayman Khaleq assisted Dubai-headquartered TVM Healthcare Partners with forming a fund primarily focused on investments in entities engaged in highly specialized healthcare services, with a secondary focus on medical products. Paul McCoy leads the practice, which includes Steven Giordano, Richard Goldman, Gerald Kehoe, Peter Phleger and the ‘superb’ Georgette Schaefer. Jarrod Huffman was promoted to partner in 2015.
Schulte Roth & Zabel LLP’s team attracts praise for its ‘in-depth industry knowledge’. Its highly active fund formation practice spans a wide range of investment strategies, including real estate, venture capital and leveraged buyout. The group also advises its sponsor clients on investment offerings, fund governance issues and secondary market transactions. Clients include Veritas Capital Fund Management, Coller Capital and Westport Capital Partners. Although the practice is weighted primarily towards acting for sponsors, it also attracts a notable share of investor-side mandates. Stephanie Breslow, whose fund formation expertise includes hybrid funds and funds involving distressed and real estate strategies, is also experienced in negotiating seed capital investments in fund managers. Joseph Smith has assisted clients with structuring funds targeting investments in the US, and further afield in Europe, Latin America and Asia. Also recommended are regulatory and compliance specialist Marc Elovitz, tax expert Shlomo Twerski and David Nissenbaum. John Mahon joined from Sutherland Asbill & Brennan LLP in 2015.
‘First rate in every respect’, Clifford Chance ‘has proven on numerous occasions that it goes the extra mile and gets the job done’. Its ‘highly responsive’ team provides ‘a global perspective to the advice it gives’ and is particularly singled out for its deep insight into the US real estate sector, where it draws upon the firm’s strengths in real estate finance and REITs. Practice head Roger Singer (‘a sage in the private equity space’) is leading the advice to Madison International on its $1bn Madison International Real Estate Liquidity Fund VI. Another key individual is Nick O’Neill, who specialises in banking and financial services regulation in the UK and across the EU. O’Neill is advising US fund managers and placement agents on AIFMD-related issues concerning their activities in the EU. Jeff Berman regularly advises US and non-US investment advisers, funds and banking organisations on regulatory matters.
Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP has a strong track record in forming traditional funds and raising capital across multiple investment strategies, including buyout, growth capital, credit and real estate. Its expertise covers every aspect of the asset manager’s business, such as the formation of new managers, carry plans, corporate governance, succession planning and regulatory issues. In 2015, Edward Nelson acted as lead adviser to I Squared Capital Advisors (US) LLC on the formation of its $3bn debut infrastructure fund. The firm also handles more bespoke and complex structures, such as funds-of-one and vehicles involving co-investment arrangements and separately managed accounts. Other pillars of the practice include handling transactional matters involving funds and managers (such as spin-offs of management teams, acquisitions and dispositions of interests in fund sponsors) and institutional investor representations. Shukie Grossman, who joined from Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP in 2015, co-chairs the practice with Jennifer Bellah Maguire and Edward Sopher. Regulatory counsel Gregory Merz is a recent hire from Proskauer Rose LLP.
Lennine Occhino and John Noell jointly lead Mayer Brown’s team, which acts for a variety of fund clients, including large and boutique asset managers, portfolio companies, banks and insurance companies. The group covers the entire fund lifecycle, ranging from structuring and formation through to investments and exit strategies. Its wide-ranging expertise enables it to advise on a variety of fund structures and investment strategies, including pledge funds and captive funds, as well as on vehicles focused on real estate, venture capital and infrastructure. Noell was lead adviser to Terranum Capital in the formation of its $54m Terranum Capital Latin America Real Estate Fund II, which invests in the development of low and middle-income housing and retail projects in Peru, Colombia and Mexico. Other clients of the practice include UBS, Prudential Real Estate Investors and Clarion Partners. Ugo Ude was promoted to partner in 2015.
‘The overall level of service is great’ at O’Melveny & Myers LLP, which fields fund management practitioners across its New York, California and Washington DC offices. The team advises its sponsor clients on a wide spectrum of investment strategies, including those focused on growth equity, credit opportunity and buyouts, as well as funds targeted at particular sectors and geographical regions. Its dedicated regulatory group handles the full gamut of regulatory and compliance issues for investment advisers. Other strengths of the practice include secondary market transactions, where the team acts for buyers, sellers and institutional investors. In an illustration of its secondaries expertise, Timothy Clark recently led the advice to Australian superannuation fund SunSuper on its $650m disposal of a number of private equity interests. Recently promoted partner Don Melamed is ‘knowledgeable, responsive and efficient’ and is recommended alongside Kathryn Sanders. The firm’s London office recently hired Eve Ellis from Mishcon de Reya LLP, and also saw the departure of Solomon Wifa, who joined Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP.
Paul Hastings LLP has a particularly strong focus on real estate funds, where it acts on cross-border matters for institutional sponsors, emerging managers and institutional investors. In addition to fund formation, its team assists with executing investment strategies, dealing with operational issues relating to funds and fund dispositions. In an illustration of the global nature of the practice, Joshua Sternoff assisted Prudential Real Estate Investments with formulating and rolling out a carried interest and employee co-investment program for PREI employees in the US, Latin America, Europe and Asia. In 2015, Lawrence Hass acted for Jaguar Growth Partners in forming and launching a $600m investment platform focusing on real estate businesses and opportunities in Latin America. Other standout individuals include Rob Carlson, Thomas Rao and Siobhan Burke.
The global nature of Shearman & Sterling LLP’s practice means that its team is not only well placed to form cross-border funds spanning a wide range of investment styles, but also to deal with a wide range of US and non-US regulatory and compliance issues, including those arising from the Dodd Frank Act and AIFMD. Laura Friedrich is ‘exceptionally proficient in all phases of the fund lifecycle, from formation, capital raising, LP/GP issues, through to liquidation’. In 2015, Friedrich was lead adviser to International Finance Corporation on its successful close of IFC Financial Institutions Growth Fund. A particular strength of the practice is its ability to leverage the firm’s extensive resources in real estate and M&A to undertake transactional matters for funds. On the limited partner side, the group is experienced in acting for sovereign wealth funds, development finance banks and other institutional investors. ‘Guiding light’ Paul Schreiber ‘provides all the technical expertise and diligence necessary to get each job done efficiently’. In 2015, John Reiss was promoted to counsel, while London-based John Adams was promoted to partner.
Phillip Isom and Adrienne Atkinson are names to note at Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP, which advises sponsors on forming and structuring funds, negotiating seed investments, executing investment strategies and an assortment of regulatory and compliance issues. The group also advises managers on spin-outs and restructurings, and has experience of a range of strategies, including leveraged buyout, growth equity, venture capital and distressed debt. Clients range from emerging sponsors to global institutions including Warburg Pincus, Neuberger Berman and ICV Partners. In 2015, Adrienne Atkinson, Gordon Caplan, Scott Arenare and others advised Insight Venture Partners on flagship fund Insight Venture Partners IX LP and co-investment vehicle Insight Venture Partners Growth Buyout Co-Investment Fund LP, with combined commitments of $4.75bn. Arash Farhadieh was promoted to partner, while Solomon Wifa joined the London office from O’Melveny & Myers LLP.
Although energy and infrastructure-related funds form the bulk of the mandates at Chadbourne & Parke LLP, the practice is notably active in emerging markets funds involving Latin America and Africa, and also advises on other fund types such as buyout and growth equity. Scott Naidech’s ‘responsive and creative’ team acts for clients including LIV Capital, Southern Cross Group and Quilvest on fund formation and ongoing management, as well as advising managers, private funds and separately managed accounts on regulatory and compliance issues. In 2015, Naidech was lead adviser to SCL Energía Activa on the formation of Americas Energy Fund II LP and a parallel vehicle, Americas Energy Fund II Clean Energy LP, which will be investing in Latin American energy and power-related assets. Other key individuals include ‘efficient attorney’ Beth Kramer, ‘clear and concise’ Morton Grosz and Talbert Navia.
Known primarily for its venture capital focus, Cooley LLP fields 35 attorneys dedicated to fund formation in this space, and can draw on more than 250 lawyers to assist fund clients with minority investments, debt financing and tax structures, among other matters. Illustrative of the scale and global nature of the practice, the group is primary fund counsel to more than 325 investment fund organizations and acts for clients in the US as well as in China and Europe. John Dado and Craig Dauchy are noted for their ‘creativity and technical expertise’. Dauchy worked with Ian O’Donnell on the $1.4bn closing of Institutional Venture Partners XV, the second largest venture fund formed in the US in 2015. Kimberley Kaplan-Gross, Shane Goudey and Bernard Hatcher are also recommended.
‘Very well regarded in the private equity funds arena’, Covington & Burling LLP’s multifaceted practice attracts work from a wide range of sponsors, purchasers and sellers of fund interests in the secondaries market (such as funds-of-funds and managed accounts), and institutional investors. On the sponsor side, its capabilities span fund formation, operation and compliance issues, as well as capital raising and general partner formation and management mandates. The team is led by William Sturman and Loretta Shaw-Lorello (‘a good problem-solver’), who acted for PineBridge Investments on a number of matters in 2015, including the restructuring of PineBridge Global Emerging Markets Fund II LP. Other clients include The Hampshire Companies, MedImmune Ventures and Neuberger Berman.
Curtis, Mallet-Prevost, Colt & Mosle LLP’s team spans the US, Europe, the Middle East and Central Asia and provides an integrated service to a range of domestic and international financial institutions, fund managers and their sponsors, as well as investor clients including pension plans, sovereign wealth funds and high-net-worth individuals. Its expertise covers capital raising, execution of investment strategies, restructurings of fund complexes and matters specific to fund managers’ businesses. The firm has maintained longstanding relationships with PE clients including Merrill Lynch, which it has advised for more than 30 years and is currently advising on the formation and launch of feeder funds for the client, as well as providing guidance on regulatory compliance issues. Carl Ruggiero and Victor Zimmermann are co-chairs of the practice, which includes Shaun Reader.
DLA Piper LLP (US)’s team acts across a diverse range of investment strategies, including buyouts, mining, debt, venture capital and real estate, for clients ranging from start-up managers setting up their first funds to global sponsors with billions of dollars under management, as well as financial institutions and their alternative asset groups. The group has experience spanning the entire lifecycle of a fund, as well as handling restructurings, financings and regulatory compliance. In 2015, Richard Reilly worked with David Goldstein, Victor Levy and Gerald Rokoff to assist Ares Management LLC with forming its flagship $1bn distressed debt fund, Ares Special Situations Fund IV. Although it is not an area of focus for the practice, the group also handles a number of limited partner representations. In 2015, Howard Rosenblum joined Choate, Hall & Stewart and Richard Gashler moved to Orion Resource Partners.
Hogan Lovells US LLP is noted for its longstanding relationships with mid-market sponsors such as Ironwood Capital and ACON Investments. The practice handles the formation and structuring of a wide range of vehicles, including funds-of-one, co-investment vehicles and separately managed accounts. It also advises on capital raising matters, ongoing operational and regulatory issues, and transactions. In an illustration of its real estate fund expertise, David Bonser and Olesya Barsukova-Bakar acted as lead advisers to JBG on the $680m JBG Investment Fund IX, which was formed to invest in real estate projects in the Washington DC area. The group also has particular strength in handling work for clients seeking a licence to operate as a small business investment company. Co-head David Winter and Elizabeth Roberts are also recommended.
Known primarily for its strengths in investor-side mandates, Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP is ‘particularly adept at identifying and neutralising risks that may arise in association with new or unusual investment vehicles’. It acts for a number of well-known institutional investors; in 2015, co-chair Dolph Hellman was lead adviser to Employees Retirement System of Texas on a $75m commitment in I Squared Global Infrastructure Fund (UST) LP. Fellow co-chair Quinn Moss has advised clients including Washington State Investment Board and New York Common Retirement Fund. On the sponsor side, the team attracts work from boutique and institutional managers and has particular strength in the high-growth technology company space, where it assists sponsors with forming early-stage funds and advises institutional investors on their investments into funds supporting emerging technologies. Yong-Nam Jun is also recommended.
Sidley Austin LLP has been particularly active for clients forming funds to invest in real assets including agri-business, real estate, infrastructure, and metals and mining. Alyssa Grikscheit and Javier Fierro are acting for Banco Interacciones in the formation of a fund to invest in infrastructure in Mexico, and in a related offering of Mexican securities. In addition to its fund formation expertise, the firm leverages its extensive resources in ancillary disciplines such as real estate and M&A to provide a full service to clients that covers seed capital transactions, restructuring funds and managers, and handling compensation plans. Timothy Clark has ‘deep private equity fund formation experience and proffers counsel that satisfies fiduciary, regulatory and commercial objectives’. Also recommended are Christian Brause, James Munsell, Beth Quintana and Susan Lewis. In 2015, Jennifer Spiegel joined from Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP, and Scott Macdonald was promoted to partner. Timothy Spangler joined Dechert LLP. Since publication, David Kreisler joined the firm's Boston office from Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP.
White & Case LLP leverages its sizeable global network to act for a wide range of clients, including large privately-held advisers with billions of dollars under management, financial institutions and their alternative asset managers and smaller, independent entities. The firm has particular strengths in forming and managing mid-market funds with a focus on buyout and real estate investment funds. It is also active in emerging markets funds targeting areas such as Africa and Latin America; Monica Arora is assisting Avanz Capital Partners with establishing a fund making investments in emerging markets. Although the practice is primarily sponsor-focused, the team also acts for institutional investors on their investments in alternative assets. John Lillis and Mara Topping are also recommended.