Clifford Chance has shaken up its global leadership positions, including adding two roles and appointing its first female head of corporate.
Current Clifford Chance Americas corporate co-head Sarah Jones has been appointed as the firm’s next global head of corporate, replacing Guy Norman, as his second term reaches an end.
Her appointment makes her the first woman at the firm to take on the role, and the role will now be based in New York for the first time in the firm’s history.
London co-head of global financial markets Emma Matebalavu takes the reins of the global financial markets practice, meanwhile, as incumbent Rob Lee also reaches the end of his second term in the role. Matebalavu has been the London co-head of global financial markets since May 2019, according to her Linkedin profile, and a partner since 2008. She becomes the first woman at the firm to become global financial markets head.
Luxembourg office head Steve Jacoby takes up the role of Continental Europe managing partner, after the role was left vacant by recently appointed global managing partner Charles Adams. Clifford Chance has also created two additional leadership roles for two partners who had run against Adams in the election for managing partner. Singapore-based partner Nicholas Wong will become the firm’s clients, markets and products partner, focssing on the “client-centric growth strategy”, and further developing the global client portfolio and client experience.
Wong, who specialises in project development and finance in the global energy and infrastructure, currently co-heads the worldwide projects group, as well as the global financial markets practice in the Asia Pacific region.
In addition, the firm has created a “global operations and business transformation partner” role, handed to London partner Jessica Littlewood, who will work to ensure the firm’s operations are aligned to the client and people strategy, the statement added. Adams said: “I am proud to announce the appointment of such a strong and diverse bench of talented people to our leadership team. I am excited by the opportunities ahead and I know that each of them will bring their unique expertise, energy and focus to build on the firm’s strong legacy, while continuing their market leading work for our clients.
These new appointments to the leadership team are critical as we continue to advance our strategic plans, with particular focus on our growth in the Americas, Europe and across the financial investors segment.” Other elite firms to have refreshed their management include Slaughter and May who elected the next heads of its corporate and M&A practice earlier in 2022, and Linklaters who announced a raft of leadership appointments in 2021, including appointing London partner Simon Branigan as global corporate head.