DLA Piper names leading corporate lawyer next senior partner for international arm

Jon Hayes set to take over 1 May from Andrew Darwin
Jon Hayes headshot

Incoming senior partner Jon Hayes Image courtesy of DLA Piper

DLA Piper has elected London-based corporate lawyer Jon Hayes as the next senior partner for its international partnership, succeeding Andrew Darwin.

Hayes will begin in the role on 1 May at the end of Darwin's four-year term. An experienced corporate lawyer, Hayes focuses his practice on public and private M&A, joint ventures and strategic partnerships, complex group re-organisations, equity capital markets and corporate finance transactions.

Hayes moved over to DLA Piper in 2009 from Linklaters, which he joined back in 1991 as a trainee and worked his way up to partner. Prior to that he also had a stint lecturing in law at King’s College London.

His work at DLA Piper has included advising: GE Renewable Energy on its acquisition of LM Wind Power for €1.5bn; Etihad Airways on the €1.8bn restructuring of Alitalia; and a consortium made up of Cheung Kong Infrastructure, Hongkong Power and the Li Ka Shing Foundation on its £5.8bn acquisition of EDF's UK electricity networks businesses.

Hayes said he was “honoured to be elected as senior partner”, adding that he intends “to focus on ensuring that our business remains robust and at the leading edge of innovation so that we continue to provide exceptional service to our clients, and that DLA Piper is a place where all of our people can thrive and excel".

Hayes was formerly a member of DLA Piper’s international board and acts as lead sponsor for the firm’s LGBT+ network, Iris. He is also a member of the firm’s diversity and inclusion council and sits on the advisory board of its pro bono affiliate, New Perimeter.

Darwin, who will continue to serve as the firm’s global co-chairman after stepping down as senior partner, said: “I’m immensely proud of what we have achieved over the last four years, and am confident in Jon’s abilities to move into the role in May.” He added that Hayes has “the gravitas and experience to help further build our business and be an exceptional advocate for the firm".

DLA Piper reported last August that its international arm had shrugged off a 1.6% decline in revenue to £1.055bn to record a 7.8% jump in profit per equity partner to £914.8k for the 2020/21 financial year. The same month the firm announced it was set to move to a larger space in Dublin as it aimed to ramp up its presence in Ireland, with the new 30,000 square foot office providing plenty of room to expand the firm’s more than 75-strong Dublin team.

In January the firm also boosted its corporate, finance, litigation and tax offering in Mexico City with the arrival of a six-partner team from White & Case, with one of the new arrivals — Alvaro Garza-Galvan — being named co-managing partner of the office. 

And just last week the firm, which withdrew from Ukraine last June when its 38-lawyer strong office in Kyiv was bought by CEE firm Kinstellar, said it was ‘complying fully with all applicable sanctions worldwide’ and ‘urgently reviewing all Russia-related client engagements’ in response to the country’s invasion of Ukraine.


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