Ropes London finance duo leave for King & Spalding

Ropes & Gray London finance partners Mark Wesseldine and Fergus Wheeler have both left the US firm’s London office to join King & Spalding.

Wesseldine, who joined Ropes in 2013 from US firm Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson, is also a former partner at Allen & Overy.

His practice focuses on leveraged buyouts, restructurings and other special situation financings. He has previously acted for clients such as investment manager KKR Credit Advisors and independent credit adviser Park Square Capital.

One market source said that Wesseldine’s practice was in “high demand among US firms in London”.

He is followed to King & Spalding by Wheeler, who joined Ropes in 2010 from Irish firm A&L Goodbody, where he was an associate. He also previously worked at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer in London and New York.

He advises private credit funds and other alternative credit providers on a range of lending transactions.

King & Spalding’s London managing partner Garry Pegg said: “London is one of the key global markets for finance and credit, so Mark and Fergus bring another important dimension to our practice in the City. This is part of a strategic push to strengthen our transactional practice in London, both in financing and corporate, so they both represent a fantastic fit with our existing M&A, capital markets, finance and private equity expertise.”

Ropes has seen a degree of churn in its London office in the last year. Senior partner Maurice Allen retired from the firm earlier this year, and joined DLA Piper as a consultant in its finance practice.

Earlier this month restructuring partner James Douglas left to join Linklaters, while in April, structured finance partner Chris McGarry moved to White & Case.

However, the firm hired finance partner Malcolm Hitching from Herbert Smith Freehills late last year.