Clients have a positive impression of the team at Schulte Roth & Zabel International LLP, commending it for providing ‘a Four Seasons-level service to every client’ and the group’s ‘unparalleled experience with hedge fund start-ups and the large hedge funds in the UK’. Lawyers at the firm have experience across the hedge funds space, regularly handling fund formations and operations, in addition to being able to utilise regulatory, tax, finance and M&A experts across the firm. Josh Dambacher's practice spans the full range of non-contentious hedge fund matters, and he is increasingly called upon in cryptocurrency and digital asset structures. Dambacher jointly heads the team alongside Christopher Hilditch, who is able to provide strategic-level advice on structuring and fund operation. Lee Smith is another name to note for fund formation, while Anna Maleva-Otto, who ‘thinks out of the box', has a strong reputation for her regulatory and compliance knowledge.
Hedge funds in London
Schulte Roth & Zabel International LLP
Josh Dambacher; Christopher Hilditch
Other key lawyers:
Lee Smith; Amy MacDonagh; Drew Miller; Anna Maleva-Otto
‘Excellent technical and commercial know-how on the hedge fund space. Veritable one stop shop for hedge fund legal service, market leading practice in London.’
‘Josh Dambacher – leading figure in the hedge fund space, very well connected, very strong commercial nous, savvy negotiator.’
‘The entire team is trained on UK and US issues — this sets SRZ apart from its competitors who lack this offering and it also makes SRZ more efficient than others firms. The team provides ‘Four Seasons’ level service to every client, looking for practical solutions not just legal road blocks. They have unparalleled experience with hedge fund start-ups but also represent most of the large hedge funds in the UK.’
‘Josh Dambacher’s passion for his clients and their success is palpable. Josh is a practical problem solver that ensures every member of the SRZ juggernaut is client-focused. He is always available… always on. Josh is the only funds partner in the market to cover UK and US issues simultaneously and has unparalleled experience in investor negotiations including seed deals, side letters, managed accounts. From my perspective, Josh is the king of hedge fund launches.’
‘Compared to other firms SRZ is the firm with the greatest wealth of experience in investment management in the City bringing the knowledge they have accumulated in light of the sophistication of the mature US market and the only one with equal exceptional expertise in UK and US law in the same time zone. They are at the forefront of the latest developments and always precursors in their field. They have seen and done it all. If they have not done it, they will invent it. They are the stamp of quality that top managers should seek for their business. They are free from conflicts so will always be jurisdictionally neutral – that is what you would expect from a trusted adviser. They also have the deepest lawyers bench specialised in investment management in the city such that they are responsive and of utmost quality.’
‘Josh Dambacher is the absolute star of the show – he is a gem – he knows it all and has single-handedly changed the investment fund market in the City. He is THE GO-TO person when it comes to investment funds – the one and only. His technical knowledge is unrivalled, his experience is unparalleled and his creativity in finding solutions very rare (most lawyers over lawyer everything and complicate things – not him) – there is no match. His constructive approach to problems shines through when things get tough or complicated. He is also an amazing leader for his team whom he has trained from scratch. He offers exceptional service, is always reachable, and cares about his clients beyond what would typically be expected. No-one has negotiated as many seed deals as he has in the City – if you want to raise money as a manager, you want him on your side!
‘Anna Maleva Otto is excellent for reg and compliance and has developed a real expertise in support of the manager clients. She also thinks outside of the box.’
Alpha Wave Global
BlueDrive Global Investors LLP
Carrhae Capital LLP
Clean Energy Transition LLP
Credit Suisse Insurance Linked Strategies Ltd.
DSAM Partners (London) Ltd.
Eisler Capital (UK) Ltd.
Engadine Partners LLP/Kairos Investment Management Ltd.
Florin Court Capital LLP
Gladstone Capital Management LLP
Haven Cove Capital Management
Kersley Street Capital LLP
Manchester Global Management (UK) Limited
Marshall Wace LLP
Orchard Global Asset Management
Oxylus Capital Ltd.
Palliser Capital (UK) Ltd.
Pantechnicon Advisors LLP
Perbak Capital Partners LLP
Qube Research & Technologies
Saidler & Co.
Securis Investment Partners LLP
TCI Fund Management Limited
- Advised Clean Energy Transition LLP on the setup of their new investment management business and spin-out from Lansdowne Partners.
- Advised Eisler Capital (UK) Ltd. on the launch of a new US$1 billion multi-strategy fund structure, focused on a range of investment products.
- Advised Saidler & Co. on the establishment of a new US-based investment management business and the launch of a Cayman Islands master-feeder fund structure which invests primarily in digital assets.
Simmons & Simmons
Simmons & Simmons has a team focused entirely on hedge fund formation, providing advice on the spectrum of issues, including structures, regulation, as well as ancillary issues such as data security, taxation, investor and employee terms, leading client to praise the firm for its ‘excellent coverage of other related areas of law to provide a holistic service‘. Most notably, the group has longstanding expertise in ESG-related funds, where it advises on US and UK regulatory change. The group brings together expertise from across the firm’s international office network, particularly in Asia and Europe. The team is headed by Devarshi Saksena, a hedge funds expert who, in 2021, took over the leadership from Iain Cullen , who continues to assist with hedge fund structuring mandates. Lucian Firth is a specialist in launching ESG funds, while Sarah Crabb has a varied practice that includes funds in the fintech space. Managing associate Kate Tracey is increasingly called upon to advise fund clients on ESG requirements.
Other key lawyers:
Lucian Firth; Sarah Crabb; Iain Cullen; Kate Tracey; Patrick Boyd
‘Excellent breadth and depth of acknowledge within asset management.’
‘Availability and experience. Dev Saksena and Patrick Boyd particular standouts.’
‘Deeply knowledgeable and responsive. Well resourced teams that enable great cost control and project management. Excellent coverage of other related areas of law to provide a holistic service. Also keep me up-to-date with regulatory developments and market intel.’
‘Excellent knowledge and personable approach. They seem to understand our business very well and what our goals are. I enjoy working with them.’
Brevan Howard Asset Management
GSA Capital Partners LLP
Axebrook Capital LLP
Zebedee Capital Partners LLP
Fosse Capital Partners
John Street Capital
Arisaig Partners (Asia)
Balliol Road Investments LLP
- Acted as lead counsel on the restructure of a Cayman Islands master-feeder structure, Man GLG Pan-European Growth and Man GLG Pan-European Growth Master
- Acted as lead counsel on the launch of Brevan Howard’s new “co-investment program” – a complex structure built around a Cayman Islands SPC and standalone investment vehicles through which specific investments could be made.
Akin is noted for its ‘great legal knowledge relevant to the asset management and hedge fund sector, combined with practical commercial application‘, focusing on US-based products, often working closely with the firm’s New York and Washington DC offices, with a particular specialism in the US and UK regulatory spaces. Jointly leading the team are Tim Pearce and Ian Meade , both of whom are active for fund launches, as well as advice pertaining to restructurings. Counsel Hamish Annandale is also recommended.
Tim Pearce; Ian Meade
Other key lawyers:
‘Great legal knowledge relevant to the asset management and hedge fund sector, combined with practical commercial application’
‘Tim Pearce and Ian Meade have great legal knowledge and experience allied to excellent commercial application.’
‘Friendly, listen to the clients, aim to understand and solve problems in the most effective manner for all' is one way Dechert LLP‘s practice is praised by clients. The team, which is situated within its financial services and investment management department, advises boutique and institutional hedge fund managers based in the UK and overseas. Fund launches are a staple for the team, which also assists clients on an ongoing basis in relation to commercial operations, global marketing activities, ESG and tax; as well as in relation to anti-money laundering and sanctions issues. The group is increasingly busy in the alternatives space, with recent experience in crypto products, as well as in relation to co-investment platforms on- and offshore. Abigail Bell ‘s ‘expertise, including across jurisdictions, is outstanding‘, and she brings it to bear in relation to fund formations; while Craig Borthwick is another key name for hedge fund launches. Mikhaelle Schiappacasse has substantial recent experience in assisting hedge funds with their investments and associate Dona Treska focuses on derivatives regulatory advice.
Other key lawyers:
Abigail Bell; Craig Borthwick; Mikhaelle Schiappacasse; Dona Treska
‘Dechert LLP has been and remains my favorite practice by far. They provide best in class service. I particularly benefitted from their global presence and smooth integration across practices. I’ve actively recommended Dechert LLP to colleagues in the industry over the years and will continue doing so.’
‘I could not recommend Abigail Bell more highly on both a professional and a personal level. Her expertise, including across jurisdictions, is outstanding, her advice always sound, she is generous with her time and has handheld us across each investment transaction and vehicle set up over the past couple of years, including regarding coordinating with her colleagues across the world and pulling in the relevant expertise from across her time.’
‘Knowledge, professionalism, approachable, dependable, trust and expertise across sectors, functions and geography’
‘The core strength of Dechert is detailed attention to a client’s issues. When questions arise that require expertise across technical legal areas Dechert can deliver the entire firm, promptly, without unnecessary clutter.’
‘Craig Borthwick is outstanding at guiding a fund launch. He is the best man in London to have in your corner for the big day.’
‘Abigail Bell is outstanding both in her knowledge and expertise and making herself available for us. Her commercial knowledge of the hedge fund industry, Funds and Co-investments, as well as new areas such as Blockchain is outstanding. She makes herself available to us when needed and keeps us abreast of legal and regulatory changes/ developments. She ensures that we speak to the right counterparties to ensure projects work.’
‘Friendly, listen to the clients, aim to understand and solve problems in the most effective manner for all. Nice people to work with.’
‘Dechert’s hedge fund team has a robust service offering at all levels of seniority, from paralegals to partners. Together they provide a rounded and mostly seamless service. In particular I am appreciative of the attention to detail, commerciality and friendly manner (specifically when interfacing with our business and our board members) which they bring to bear on project work.’
All Africa Partners LLP
Almace Asset Management LLP
Amundsen Investment Management
ARP Capital Partners Limited
Aster Capital Management Limited
Bayforest Capital Limited
BlueBell Partners Limited
Cheyne Capital Management (UK) LLP
EFG Asset Management / New Capital
Eleva Capital LLP
EMFI Capital Limited
Gemcorp Capital LLP
Genavest Capital Limited
Kairos Group / Engadine Partners LLP
Kryger Capital (formerly Omni Partners LLP)
LeCap Asset Management
Lynx Asset Management
Maven Securities Limited
Mile End Capital
Odyssean Capital LLP
OxFORD Asset Management Company
Palmerston Capital Management
Palm Lane Capital
SGCM Capital LLP
Soloda Investment Advisors LLP
Sparta Capital Management
System 2 Capital LLP
Tresidor Investment Management LLP
Westbeck Capital Management LLP
- Advised FIFTHDELTA on its US$1.3 billion raise, which was the largest hedge fund launch in Europe in 2021.
- Advised Nekton Capital Limited on the successful launch of their flagship fund, one of the largest new hedge funds in Europe in 2021 (with c. US$1bn launch capital) and one of the most high-profile fund launches in the City.
- Advised Exor on the successful launch of the new Exor Special Opportunities master and feeder sub-funds (open-ended sub-funds with limited liquidity on their master-feeder Irish ICAV structure).
Fieldfisher handles structuring, launches, fund operation and charges, with particular expertise in derivatives trading and backed up with significant regulatory expertise throughout the firm’s network across Europe. Ron Feldman is the leader of the derivatives and structured finance team, focusing on buy-side clients. Also in the derivatives team is Emma Spiers, who has a varied practice involving structured equity, credit and funding transactions. Dale Gabbert joined from Simmons & Simmons as head of funds in May 2021, bringing with him a strong track-record in hedge funds work, and experience in advising institutional investors.
Other key lawyers:
Dale Gabbert; Emma Spiers; Jenny Warren
‘I had a very good experience with Fieldfisher when it came to the launch of my hedge fund. Fieldfisher has all the necessary components to advise emerging asset managers on such complex projects as the launch of the first fund. In doing so it is not only highly professional but also stand out well in terns of value for money.’
JCAM/S and F
Rokos Capital Management LLP
Accent Capital Management Limited, Accent Global Technology Fund and Accent Global Technology Master Fund
- Advised on the launch of Accent Global Technology Fund (a Cayman fund with a master-feeder structure) for new client, Accent Capital. Responsible for the overall management of the launch of the fund and drafted or reviewed and negotiated all the requirement documents and agreements (including the fund’s prospectus and prime brokerage and trading agreements).
- Advising a manager with assets under management of over $1 trillion in relation to a number of managed account agreements.
- Advising a longstanding client in relation to its regulatory hosting arrangements in the UK and the arrangements with its Manco in the EU.
Sidley Austin LLP
At Sidley Austin LLP, the hedge funds practice is integrated into the firm’s global offering, with the London office housing the European practice group, often working alongside colleagues in the US and Asia. The team is experienced in a range of fund strategies, including credit, fixed-income, managed futures, event-driven equity, and an increasingly active focus on cryptocurrency-related funds. Investment funds practice head James Oussedik takes the lead, with a specialism in fund formation and a focus on credit funds, although he is also active across a number of traditional hedge fund strategies. Stephen Ross is the name to note for asset management instructions, with a practice that emphasises hedge funds in the biotech, healthcare and protein sectors. Leonard Ng stands out for his regulatory expertise, particularly in relation to ESG and crypto assets.
Other key lawyers:
Stephen Ross; Leonard Ng; Peter Chapman
‘Breadth and depth of the team. Accessibility to the partners of the firm. I have known many partners in the firm for over a number of years and the service is without question exemplary. Billing is transparent.’
‘Strong Fund practice both in Europe and the US. Have helped on a number of areas especially Regulation and M&A.’
‘Stephen Ross has incredible knowledge of the alternative investment management industry and although his main practice is fund formation and LPs investments. He has been an extremely good sounding board through the grow of our investment management business.’
Maniyar Capital Advisors Limited
Generation Investment Management
Man Group plc
- Advised Maniyar with respect to the launch of a dedicated fund of one for a major institutional investor, including co-investment arrangements.
- Providing Serone with strategic legal advice across its fund business and support in relation to launch of new products and negotiations with investors. Advised on the launch of a new multi-strategy credit fund, a two-legged hedge fund established in the Cayman Islands with Cayman and Delaware feeders, investing predominantly in securitized credits and corporate credit, primarily in European, UK and North American markets.
- Advised Valence8 on the launch of its business and initial fund products, including two liquid strategy allocation funds. Also advised Valence8 both in connection with the structuring of its complex management group arrangements across three jurisdictions, including the negotiation of multiple GP-stake deals with cornerstone investors.
Macfarlanes LLP is most focused on advising start-up managers, bringing together funds expertise with strong practitioners in the tax department. The group is particularly adept with alternative credit funds, where it advises large European credit managers with fund stables including liquid alternative credit products. The team is noted for its fund formation work, in particular pertaining to hybrid hedge funds. The overall funds team is led by Stephen Robinson , while Sam Brooks heads the hedge funds sub-group. Associate Emma Garnham is increasingly known for advising on structuring and regulation of hedge funds.
Other key lawyers:
Sam Brooks; Emma Garnham
‘This practice advises on a broad range of hedge funds matters and also works seamlessly with other practice groups within the firm, to provide clients with comprehensive advice across all aspects of law that is relevant to hedge funds.’
‘The Macfarlanes hedge fund team is great to work with; they are collaborative and are solid across all investment strategies, and particularly credit. What’s more, they have the backing of solid teams in other areas (tax, derivatives etc) to support their practice. They stand out as being a very bright bunch in the market and a really nice team.’
‘Sam Brooks stands out as being particularly visible and engaged on files (but not in a way that is in any way over the top), which gives a lot of reassurance.’
‘There is a real “can do” energy, with the client being put first – no matter what the assignment is, the team are always on top of the work flow, finding intelligent but practical solutions and ensuring all deadlines are met. I cannot think of a single example where the team have not exceeded expectations and generated real value.’
Shearman & Sterling LLP
Shearman & Sterling LLP‘s lawyers work closely with the firm’s colleagues in the US to advise institutional fund managers on a variety of hedge fund issues, including US, UK and European regulations. The team is led by John Adams , a member of the investment funds group. Phil Baynes joined the group from Weil, Gotshal & Manges (London) LLP in May 2022, adding an expert in advising institutional investors on alternative investment programmes.
Other key lawyers:
Phil Baynes; James Gray
Attestor Capital LLP
Abu Dhabi Global Market
TT International Family Group
Prosperity Capital Management Limited
Autoriti Monetari Brunei Darussalam
TRG Management L.P.
Maverick Capital Ltd.
Steadfast Financial LP
Skybridge Capital II, LLC
RK Capital Management
- Advised Attestor Limited on its flagship special situations / distressed assets fund on multiple matters including its fund vehicles, internal structuring, advisory arrangements, derivatives and prime brokerage arrangements, and multiple other matters.
- Advising Steadfast in relation to multiple complicated managed account arrangements, international structuring matters relating to offices, and related.