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No summer lull for Keystone Law as firm appoints raft of big hitters

Listed law firm Keystone has announced ten new arrivals hailing from some of the industry’s major players. The lateral hires will enhance the firm’s banking & finance, corporate, commercial, competition, construction, disputes, family, real estate and shipping teams.

Real Estate

Robert Kilgour (former Partner, Charles Russell Speechlys)

Robert specialises in real estate investment, advising on acquisitions and disposals as well as property financing. With a client base that includes property listed companies, high-net-worth individuals and overseas investors, he has acted on a range of portfolio acquisitions and disposals, and advises corporate tenants on their occupational requirements. Robert also provides advice on Islamic finance in relation to commercial property transactions. Additionally, he has advised landowners on the assembly and disposal of strategic land.

Construction

Tom Phillips (former Partner, Knights)

Tom specialises in the non-contentious aspects of construction, development and finance law. His work includes drafting, negotiating and reviewing construction contracts, agreements from performance bonds to collateral warranties, professional appointments, and development finance documents. He routinely advises on bespoke as well as standard JCT, NEC and PPC contracts and has a track record in development projects ranging from small multi-unit developments up to multimillion-pound mixed-used projects. Tom has acted for developers, funders, landowners, professionals, registered housing providers, and blue-chip contractors.

EU & Competition

Philippe Ruttley (former Partner, Head of EU and Competition Law, Ince & Co)

Philippe is a leading specialist in EU and UK competition law, trade law and data (GDPR) issues. He is a dual Swiss and British national and works in English and French. His client base comprises a broad range of aviation and maritime clients, whom he advises on competition, international trade and GDPR issues. Throughout his career Philippe has represented clients in hearings before the European Commission, the EU General Court, and the Court of Justice of the European Union, as well as national competition authorities. He has practised in Brussels and has had experience of government service: he is a former legal counsel at the United Nations in Rome, and legal adviser on EU competition law and international treaties at HM Treasury Solicitors.

Shipping

Dharmendra Nair (former Partner, Squire Patton Boggs)

Disputes lawyer Dharmendra is a specialist in shipping, commodities and commercial litigation. He primarily represents companies and individuals based in India, Singapore and Bangladesh. Dharmendra has also advised and represented various oil companies, ship-owners, charterers, steel manufacturers, commodity suppliers, banks, software companies and wealthy individuals in relation to various disputes in London, India and Singapore.

George Lambrou (former Partner, Thomas Cooper)

George is an international dispute resolution specialist who resolves high-value and complex multijurisdictional disputes. He is a Solicitor Advocate who spends most of his time involved in arbitration and as a negotiator and overall problem solver. Throughout his career, George has advised and acted for (and against) governments, commercial entities and individuals from a wide range of countries. His unique background and language skills in Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) have proven particularly valuable in that part of the world. George has extensive English High Court experience, as well as international arbitration experience under a number of other arbitral rules and procedures. He also has a very strong maritime background, having been a partner for many years in a leading London-based shipping law firm.

Banking & Finance

Martin Brown (former Partner & Head of Qatar, Addleshaw Goddard)

Martin specialises in international finance and acts for a variety of financial institutions, as well as sponsors and corporate borrowers. He has worked on matters spanning the globe for market-leading international financial institutions and companies. Advising on English law, Qatari law, and the laws and regulations of the Qatar Financial Centre, Martin has advised on many conventional and Shari’a-compliant transactions throughout the Gulf Cooperation Council, Africa and Europe.

Corporate & Commercial

Oleg Shvander (former Partner, Withers LLP)

Oleg has a distinct specialism in transactions for successful entrepreneurs and their corporate vehicles, particularly in emerging markets. His focus is advising clients on a broad range of mergers & acquisitions and financing transactions in technology, infrastructure, energy, telecommunications, and natural resource sectors. Oleg is highly experienced in emerging markets, cross-border transactions, negotiated acquisitions, and private equity. Due to his extensive contacts and relationships he often has access to early-stage investment opportunities and acts as an investor or co-investor together with his clients or business partners.

Elizabeth Holden (former Partner, Slaughter & May)

Elizabeth has most recently been advising entrepreneurs and growth companies on all legal aspects of their existence. She is involved in early-stage fund raising (including applications for investment relief), shareholder documentation and governance structures. She drafts and reviews commercial contracts, partnership and joint venture arrangements, and advises on sale and acquisition agreements. Previously, Elizabeth has led many high-profile international M&A and other transactions, typically advising FTSE 100 companies and private equity houses. Today she devotes her energies towards smaller enterprises, whether private or AIM listed, where her current non-executive director experience adds useful commercial focus.

Dispute Resolution

Gagan Ranu (former Head of India Desk, Lewis Silkin)

Former Lewis Silkin lawyer and Head of India Desk, Gagan Ranu has experience of all types of dispute resolution including litigation, arbitration (both institutional and ad hoc), and mediation. He has particular expertise in international arbitration, and has handled cases under the auspices of a number of arbitral rules and procedures. Most of Gagan’s work is international, with a particular focus on India and the Middle East and he maintains a strong Indian client base, working with some of the largest multinational groups there. He is also able to draw on an extensive network of contacts to meet the requirements of UK and others looking to invest in India, and has been involved in several initiatives to boost bi-lateral trade between India and the UK. Clients include large international/ multinational conglomerates and corporations, high net worth individuals and SMEs operating across sectors including shipping and international trade, technology, energy, projects and infrastructure, and financial services.

Family

Caroline Kelly (former Solicitor, Mischon de Reya)

Caroline advises on all areas of family law including pre- and post-nuptial agreements, divorce, financial claims relating to relationship breakdown, cohabitation and civil partnerships. She also deals with issues associated with children law, ranging from residence and contact, to leave to remove and surrogacy.

CEO and founder James Knight commented:

“As the legal sector continues to evolve and technology begins to play a more significant part in the way that firms operate, our ongoing mission is simply to offer the most flexible, agile approach for our lawyers and their clients and we are pleased that these individuals have chosen to join us on that mission. Each of them will play a key role in supporting the firm’s growth as we build on our strength as a growing, national firm with an increasingly genuine full-service offering.”


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