Orrick makes City corporate hire as firm eyes 50% headcount increase for London practice

Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe has recruited City corporate partner Paul Doris from Watson Farley & Williams, as the US firm pushes forward with plans to ramp up its London corporate presence.

Doris, an M&A and private equity lawyer who specialises in the energy and infrastructure sectors, has been at Watson Farley since 2014 after joining as a partner from Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom, where he was a counsel.

He trained at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, where he worked for almost 13 years, rising to senior associate.

Orrick Europe corporate head Anthony Riley said he is expecting the London corporate practice to continue to grow in the coming years.

Riley said: “When I joined Orrick six years ago there were only three partners in the London corporate practice, and now we are up to 14, including Paul.

“We have no specific targets – but given the speed and success with which we have managed to grow the corporate group in recent years, I do not think it is unrealistic to expect to grow the group by a further 50% over the next three years.”

While the firm declined to provide a breakdown of office revenues, a spokesman said European revenues had grown 24% during 2017, while London revenues have been growing about 20% for the last four years.

The firm now has about 100 lawyers in London, with the hire of Doris taking total partner count to 32.

Riley commented: “Paul’s hire will enable the corporate group to expand the range of energy technologies on which we advise, and also give us a broader infrastructure focus. As a fluent Spanish speaker and with considerable transactional experience in Spain, Paul’s arrival creates significant opportunities in that growing Spanish infrastructure market and also into Latin America through our Houston office.”

In continental Europe, the firm also has 33 partners in Paris, with 14 in Duesseldorf and 10 in Rome, alongside a further 17 across Milan, Munich and Geneva.

Last year, Orrick hired four lawyers from Clifford Chance in Paris, including local competition head Patrick Hubert, while in 2016 the firm recruited four partners from Freshfields including Paris employment head Emmanuel Benard.