DLA Piper has lost three partners in Hong Kong and Singapore.
In Hong Kong, finance partner Jolyon Ellwood-Russell and corporate partner Giovanni Marino have moved to Simmons & Simmons and Winston & Strawn, respectively, while former Singapore partner Benjamin Sandstad has taken an in-house job at Standard Chartered Bank.
Sandstad had joined DLA Piper a year ago from Mayer Brown JSM, where he was a banking and finance partner. Last month he was part of a team advising state-run Rizhao Port Group Co. Ltd. on a $138 million renminbi-denominated bond issue in Hong Kong. He moved to Hong Kong in 2010 to join Mayer Brown JSM as a consultant, and was promoted to partner a year later. Previously, he was a Sydney-based partner at Australian firm Clayton Utz for four years, but has also worked for Linklaters in Hong Kong and Tokyo.
Ellwood-Russell, now a partner at Simmons & Simmons, was the Hong Kong-based head of DLA Piper’s Structured Trade and Commodity Finance practice in Asia, advising on debt and project financings. Last September, he acted for ABN AMRO Bank N.V., Natixis and Société Générale on a $195 million loan facility to Chinese aluminum producer Xinjiang Zhaokun Trading Co. Ltd. He had been with DLA Piper for 15 years, first in London before relocating to Hong Kong in 2009. He was promoted to partner in 2011.
Marino has moved to Chicago-based Winston & Strawn as a partner, advising on foreign direct investment, mergers and acquisitions and other general corporate matters. He joins former DLA Piper Hong Kong-based Asia corporate head Mabel Lui, who made the jump to Winston & Strawn in May taking three lawyers with her. Marino first joined DLA Piper in 2003 and was promoted to partner three years later.
DLA Piper declined to comment on the departures.
The firm has seen a number of other exits in recent months. In addition to the aforementioned departures, Jun He Law Offices hired away former Hong Kong partner Esther Leung last month. In April, former Singapore partner Sheela Moorthy joined Norton Rose Fulbright, while Hong Kong partner Jae Chul Lee moved to Loeb & Loeb in March.