Akin Gump in talks to take on team of Dewey partners in London

Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld is in talks to hire a team of partners from Dewey & LeBoeuf’s City office.

The team hire, which has not yet been agreed, is understood to comprise at least four London partners including oil & gas partner John LaMaster, finance partner Bruce Johnston, banking partner Amanda Jennings, who works closely with Johnston, and oil and gas partner Marc Hammerson.

LaMaster, who recently stepped down from the firm’s executive committee, currently chairs the firm’s global oil & gas sector group. He focuses on M&A, joint ventures and project development in the energy industry.

Johnston heads the firm’s bank and institutional finance group. He advises on acquisition finance, leveraged finance, project finance and structured and asset finance.

Jennings, meanwhile, focuses primarily on acquisition and project finance, having recently advised on one of the biggest M&A deals in the Polish media sector – the £844m acquisition of private TV broadcaster Telewizja Polsat.

None of the partners have handed in their notice and it is thought that Akin could also be talking to at least one other partner in London, as well as lawyers in another jurisdiction.

Akin Gump managing partner Rick Burdick said: “Akin Gump regularly talks to potential lateral candidates who may be a good fit with the firm. However, we are unable to provide any confirmation of hires until there is an agreement between all parties.”

The news comes after former London managing partner of legacy Dewey Ballantine Fred Gander handed in his resignation today (24 April). Gander is set to join accounting giant KPMG’s US arm to head its US tax practice for Europe and the Middle East.

Separately, Washington DC project finance partner Gregory Smith also announced his departure for Allen & Overy’s recently launched based in the US capital.

Related: Dewey presses to secure debt terms as focus turns to losses from international network.