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03 June 2020

36 Stone takes on Vannin Capital managing director Paul Martenstyn

New director of clerking also signs with professional services consultancy Overture London

By Ben Rigby

Paul Martenstyn has left litigation funder Vannin Capital to become director of clerking at 36 Stone, the specialist London trade, arbitration and maritime set of chambers.

He leaves Vannin Capital after spending nearly two years there as one of its managing directors.

He will combine his new role at 36 Stone, which is part of the 36 Group comprising more than 150 barristers, with that of chief commercial officer at professional services consultancy Overture London.

Martenstyn is a well-known figure within London's clerking community and was one of the first barristers’ clerks to obtain professional marketing qualifications.

He said: “The skills I have learned in the investment world will not be lost, but I also now get to fully commit to a new project at the Bar.”

He added: “I am really excited to be leading the 36 Stone charge; I was encouraged by their ambition and I know my track record will provide them with commercial value in the months ahead.”

36 Stone joined the 36 Group in 2018, following the dissolution of its previous relationship with mega-set St. Philips Chambers. 

Known to many as Stone Chambers, the set has seen significant departures at member and senior clerk level. Long-term senior clerk, Luke Irons, elected to join Maitland Chambers in July 2019, having overseen the transition of the set to the 36 Group, one of London’s larger full-service sets.

Previous departures saw three former members, plus a senior clerk, elect to join Monckton Chambers in 2018, bolstering that set’s commercial team.  They were joined by former Joseph Hage Aaronson partner (and former Stone Chambers head) Stephen Gee QC in March 2019. 

Sets such as 7 King’s Bench Walk, Twenty Essex, and Quadrant Chambers also picked up barristers from the set in the last few years, which has seen its headcount fall as a result. 

However, it retains a Singapore annex, a crucial counterpart to its London home, given that country’s burgeoning arbitration scene.

Charles Debattista, head of 36 Stone, said he was excited by the opportunities that Martenstyn and Overture brought to the set. 

Debattista said: “High-end quality of advocacy, advisory and arbitration services require senior and equally prestigious management in clerking and strategy functions.”

He added: “We are also proud to be in the vanguard of what is for the Bar a completely innovative and forward-looking method of delivering critical practice management and business strategy services.”

Martenstyn is the second managing director known to have left Vannin in recent months. Last November, Ania Farren joined London boutique firm, Omnia Strategy, as a partner. 

Vannin was sold to Fortress Investment Group in 2019 a year after a planned IPO was cancelled. Since then a number of staff and senior non-executive personnel have departed alongside office closures in Europe and the US, where it had expanded significantly.

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