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18 January 2021

Linklaters appoints global co-heads of banking and Europe chief in leadership shake-up

London and Madrid partners to share leadership of banking practice; Lisbon partner to lead Europe arm from May

By John Malpas

Crosse (left) and Spittal

Linklaters has turned to Madrid-based Ben Crosse and London’s Philip Spittal to co-head its global banking group and appointed Lisbon-based Nuno Ferreira Lousa as its new European managing partner.

The appointment of Crosse and Spittal has been sparked by the departure of former banking head Davide Mencacci for Wall Street leader Milbank in Hong Kong, less than two years into his term, the leveraged financing specialist having defected to the Walls Street firm in a high-profile move announced in November.

They will serve four-year terms heading up the group as its first co-heads, reporting to global head of finance Paul Lewis, one of three divisional practice group leaders who sit on the firm’s executive committee. 

Aside from a six-month secondment in Credit Suisse First Boston’s leveraged finance equity sponsors group, Crosse has spent his entire legal career at Linklaters having previously worked out of its London and Paris offices before moving to Madrid. He specialises in advising on private equity leveraged financings, investment grade lending and real estate financings.

Last May, he led the Linklaters team that advised fashion retailer Tendam on a groundbreaking  €117.5m syndicated loan guaranteed by the Spain’s State Finance Agency, the ICO.

Spittal, meanwhile, took the unusual step of joining Linklaters as a managing associate in 2000 having been recently made up to the partnership of legacy UK Dentons firm Denton Wilde Sapte. He became a partner four years later and specialises in syndicated lending, and event-driven, acquisition and leveraged finance transactions.

Tate & Lyle, William Hill, Travis Perkins and Bovis Homes are among corporate borrowers he has advised on core and event-related financings.

Lewis said of the duo: “The pandemic, interest rate reforms and Brexit has reset the industry’s growth path. We are confident that they will steer our banking team’s continued market leadership in helping clients navigate the challenges ahead.”

Meanwhile, Lisbon-based Nuno Ferreira Lousa will succeed Milan-based capital markets specialist Claudia Parzani as European managing partner on 1 May. He currently heads the firm’s dispute resolution and restructuring teams in Lisbon and chaired ICC Portugal’s corporate responsibility and anti-corruption commission from 2014-2019. 

Corporate divisional practice head Aedamar Comiskey and global real estate head Andy Bruce have been re-appointed to serve additional two-year terms.

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