(J. Albert Diaz/ALM)
Another corporate group leader is set to leave Stroock & Stroock & Lavan this week, just a few months after the firm lost about 10 attorneys from the same group.
Lior Ohayon, who was co-leader of Stroock’s corporate practice and chair of its private funds group, plans to join Willkie Farr & Gallagher as a partner in its asset management practice this week, Ohayon confirmed Tuesday.
Meanwhile, another Stroock corporate lawyer, Armando Ramirez, landed this week at McDermott Will & Emery, which announced the partner hire Wednesday. Ramirez works on the sale and acquisition of interests in energy businesses and the development and financing of energy projects. He joins his former Stroock colleague Jeffrey Meyers, who joined McDermott in April.
Ohayon praised Willkie’s investment funds group and said his move “will offer opportunities for growth” for his practice and his new firm. He added that his move was independent of other Stroock exits.
In a statement, Stroock said it wished Ohayon well and called him “a valued member of our corporate group for 14 years.”
“We retain a deep bench in corporate and private funds work and will continue to recruit new talent and practice leadership across the firm, Stroock said, adding that next week, it anticipates announcing the addition of a transactional group, including a partner, counsel and two associates.
According to his former Stroock profile, which is no longer active, Ohayon has advised banks, financial services companies and investment management firms on fund formation, asset management, compensation and regulatory matters.
His representations include investment management matters for JPMorgan Chase & Co., Morgan Stanley, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Mizuho Bank Ltd. and State Bank of India, among several others, according to his former Stroock profile.
The move continues a string of fund attorney exits from Stroock amid a recent leadership change. Jeffrey Keitelman, based in Washington, D.C., was named co-managing partner last year, succeeding Stuart Coleman, who had been co-managing partner for 12 years.
In March, a funds group led by Coleman, who was investment management chair at Stroock, left for Proskauer Rose. Five other partners, a senior counsel and about five associates, went with Coleman, according to The American Lawyer’s reporting in March.
Other Stroock fund attorneys, Tram Nguyen and Yousuf Dhamee, joined Paul Hastings in June 2016 as partners.
Elsewhere in the firm’s corporate practice, Meyers, who was head of Stroock’s energy and project finance practice, joined McDermott in April, and Cooley snagged former private equity chair Ray LaSoya in Los Angeles.
According to a source familiar with Stroock, Ohayon’s departure is a notable loss, compounded by the earlier departures, because Stroock had high regards for Ohayon and considered him a promising young partner with business.
Overall, Stroock has seen about 15 partner exits in 2017, including those going to Proskauer, according to ALM’s RivalEdge lateral move database.
However, Stroock, which recently completed a strategic review, has seen growth in some practices.
Stroock’s statement Tuesday said that it has added more than a dozen lawyers in the first half of this year, including in corporate, real estate, tax, private client services, government contracts and financial restructuring.
Stroock has added at least three lateral partners this year, including Seamus Curley from DLA Piper, tax attorney Michelle Jewett from Morrison & Foerster and tax and estate attorney Kevin Matz, who previously had his own practice.
The firm also added Thomas Zampino in its real estate tax certiorari practice as special counsel.
“That inflow will continue in the months ahead as we stay focused on growing our core practices from our very solid foundation,” Stroock said Tuesday.
Todd Lenson remains chair of Stroock’s corporate department.
According to The American Lawyer, Stroock’s gross revenue last year inched up by 1.9 percent to $270.5 million, while profits per partner dropped 1.61 percent to $1.225 million.
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