Paul Hastings Adds Prominent Financial Restructuring Partner in London

February 20, 2024

LONDON - Further expanding its reputation as one of the premier global restructuring platforms, Paul Hastings LLP announced today that William Needham, a leading financial restructuring and distressed debt specialist, has joined the firm as a partner in London. He will serve as the co-chair of the firm’s European restructuring practice with fellow partner Mei Lian.

Needham joins from KKR & Co., Inc., where he served as the European head of restructuring, global head of sustainable credit, and former European general counsel for KKR credit. He was previously a lawyer at Weil Gotshal & Manges LLP.

“Will’s unique skill set and background, along with his stellar relationships across the market, will play an important role in the continued growth of our financial restructuring practice in Europe and globally,” said firm Chair Frank Lopez. “We are thrilled to have Will join us and look forward to working with him as we continue to develop opportunities in the European and global corporate, finance, and restructuring markets.”

Needham was a managing director on the credit team at KKR, where he restructured debt totalling approximately $10 billion, led bankruptcy proceedings and informal workouts for KKR in numerous asset classes across Europe, and sat on the boards of multiple global KKR portfolio companies. He sits on the private debt advisory committee of the Principles for Responsible Investment and the private debt committee of the European Leveraged Finance Association.  

“Paul Hastings is generating a reputation as a firm with one of the best restructuring and special situations practices in the legal industry,” said Needham. “I saw immediate synergies between my work and the firm’s strong global platform with its impressive client base. I am excited to work closely with corporate and finance colleagues in Europe and the United States as we continue to grow the firm’s top-tier global restructuring practice.”

Needham joins other recent talent added to the Paul Hastings global financial restructuring and finance teams, such as the Band 1 finance team from Latham & Watkins LLP and restructuring partner Helena Potts from Sherman & Sterling in London, and the high-profile 18-partner group of financial restructuring partners who joined in the U.S. from Stroock & Stroock & Lavan LLP last year.

“Will is a talented leader and will be a key player in our efforts to expand our services, geographical reach and client base,” said Kris Hansen, Global Co-Chair of Paul Hastings’ restructuring group. 

Other prominent London additions to Paul Hastings this year include top-ranked energy and infrastructure partners Jessamy Gallagher and Stuart Rowson from Linklaters LLP, private equity and high yield partners Samantha McGonigle and Patrick Bright from Weil Gotshal & Manges LLP, international arbitration partner Garreth Wong from Shearman & Sterling, and market-leading ESG and sustainability lawyer Ruth Knox from Kirkland & Ellis LLP.

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