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Rod Palmer, partner and global head of investment funds with Walkers

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‘Business as usual’ for Walkers despite Maples & Calder move

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In the wake of Walkers’ recent announcement regarding the sale of Walkers Management Services to Intertrust, Maples & Calder has made an approach to a small number of Walkers’ investment funds lawyers based in the Cayman Islands and British Virgin Islands – a move that Walkers says it was expecting.

"This move by Maples did not take us by surprise and was something we have been fully prepared for," commented Diarmad Murray, Walkers’ Global Managing Partner. "Walkers remains in excellent shape and we are confident that clients’ legal requirements will continue to be serviced to the highest standards. We continue to speak with our clients about the exciting developments and continued growth at Walkers following the sale of our management services group and our future as a market-leading, truly independent law firm. "

According to a statement released by Walkers: “All of the individuals named in Maples’ announcement are current employees of Walkers and we will immediately let our clients know if and when they leave the firm.
A small number of our salaried partners disagreed with the strategic direction that the firm has taken and have made the decision to leave. Our equity partnership remains 100% intact and every equity partner is fully committed to our global strategy. Walkers remains one of the most successful and profitable offshore law firms and is on track for a very positive year.”

Walkers had more investment funds partners ranked in the current ‘International Who’s Who of Investment Funds Lawyers’ than any other law firm worldwide, therefore regardless of any departures, the firm has an extremely deep bench and it will be business as usual for Walkers’ Investment Funds Group.

“Walkers has one of the largest investment funds teams globally, which still consists of 55 investment funds lawyers, so we have a wealth of specialists who will ensure that we continue to deliver the same high standard of legal service to our funds clients," says Rod Palmer (pictured), Global Head of Investment Funds with Walkers. "We will also shortly be announcing the relocation of several senior investment funds partners back to the Cayman office, so that clients can be assured we have the capability to deliver, or even surpass, the same high quality legal services that they have become accustomed to.”

Since opening in 1964, Walkers has advised the some of the world’s leading investment managers, financial institutions and companies on sophisticated and complex legal matters. Walkers currently has 156 fee earners globally across eight international offices.

"Walkers’ Investment Funds Group is an industry leader and will remain so," says Palmer added. "Our capabilities and legal expertise in the investment funds arena is of the highest calibre and we will retain this know-how in the event of any departures."

Following the sale of Walkers Management Services, Walkers will be the only fully independent Cayman Islands’ law firm ranked in the top tier for investment funds by the leading legal directories. This development mirrors evolving global financial regulation and an aversion on the part of many major investors to the inherent conflicts that exist where lawyers and investment fund directors are affiliated.

As Walkers continues to evolve with the decoupling of our management and legal services capabilities, the firm fully expects its staffing structure to evolve alongside it.

Related story –

Maples and Calder’s Cayman and British Virgin Islands offices to expand leading funds team

 

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