Arthur Cox raids William Fry for three-partner Dublin funds team

Arthur Cox has sealed the hire of a three-partner Dublin funds team from local rival William Fry.

The trio – Tara O’Reilly, Ian Dillon and Cormac Commins – represent almost half of the partners in William Fry’s asset management and investment funds practice.

O’Reilly, who has been with William Fry since 1999, is known for her expertise in exchange-traded funds (ETFs) and leads the firm’s ETF practice.

Commins, meanwhile, has been at the firm for 14 years, and counts financial giants such as Barclays, BlackRock, Lazard and BNY Mellon among his clients. Dillon, who joined from Cayman Islands firm Campbells in 2013, has a focus on hedge funds and liquid alternative fund formation.

Following the departures, William Fry’s funds department will have five partners and a team of 28 in total. It will continue to be led by partner Dan Morrissey.

Dublin is a key European centre for funds work, with leading local firms such as Mathesons and A&L Goodbody, offshore firms such as Walkers and international firms including Dechert all having significant funds-focused practices in the Irish capital.

Dechert, which launched in Dublin in 2010, recently added its third funds partner in the city, with Jeff Mackey joining from local firm Dillon Eustace.

Last month, it emerged that Pinsent Masons is set to launch in Ireland this year with the hire of three partners.

The Irish market has been of particular interest for international firms since last year’s Brexit vote as financial institutions look to establish bases within European Union jurisdictions in advance of the UK’s anticipated exit from the trading bloc. Other firms to have been linked to a launch in Ireland include international giant DLA Piper.

Arthur Cox and William Fry declined to comment.