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MoFo’s Peck Hired by Energy Future Panel: Business of Law

May 14 (Bloomberg) -- Former U.S. Bankruptcy Judge James Peck will represent the official committee of unsecured creditors in the bankruptcy of Energy Future Holdings Corp., the Texas power company that is trying to restructure about $40 billion in debt.

Peck, co-chairman of Morrison & Foerster LLP’s global business restructuring and insolvency group, and Brett H. Miller, a partner with the firm, will be lead attorneys for the committee.

Energy Future is represented by the law firm Kirkland & Ellis LLP, whose bankruptcy practice was built by attorney James Sprayregen. Kirkland’s Chad J. Husnick and Edward O. Sassower have been the lead lawyers for Energy Future’s court appearances so far.

Energy Future filed for court protection April 29 after negotiating a restructuring deal with senior lenders that virtually wipes out the equity stakes of KKR & Co., TPG Capital and Goldman Sachs Group Inc., which took the company private in a record $48 billion leveraged buyout in 2007.

A panel representing lower-ranked creditors in the electricity provider’s $50 billion bankruptcy was named on May 12.

Peck, who oversaw Lehman’s wind-down for about 5 1/2 years, retired from the bankruptcy court on Jan. 31 after eight years. Peck presided over other high-profile bankruptcies, such as Charter Communications Inc., as well as the Chapter 15 filing by Japan Airlines Corp. He also helped achieve settlements as a mediator in the bankruptcies of American Airlines parent AMR Corp., MF Global Holdings Ltd. and Residential Capital LLC.

MoFo represented Residential Capital and advised former Federal Bureau of Investigation Director Louis Freeh in his role as trustee for MF Global Holdings Ltd., the biggest filing in 2011. 

Law Firms

Bingham McCutchen Leadership Handover Set for June 1

Bingham McCutchen LLP’s Steven Browne will take over as managing partner of the 850-lawyer firm on June 1, following through on the succession plans announced in October.

Browne replaces Jay Zimmerman, who has led Bingham since May 1994, when it had 175 lawyers. Zimmerman will remain chairman through 2015 and continue to focus on strategic matters, the firm said.

Bingham has 14 offices in the U.S., Europe and Asia. Like may large firms, it posted declining revenue last year. Revenue fell $110 million to $762 million in the first drop in 20 years, Zimmerman said in February.

“It’s been an incredibly rewarding run,” Zimmerman said in a statement. “The partnership is fortunate to be able to count on Steve and a new generation of leaders to guide Bingham to the next level.”

Browne named three partners to his management team: Daniel Papermaster will assume the role of operating partner, Anthony Carbone will be finance partner and Debra Fischer will be administrative partner.

Browne has held a number of leadership roles at the firm including managing partner of the Boston office, co-chairman of the 350-lawyer corporate area, and co-leader of the firm’s corporate, mergers and acquisitions, and securities group.

Moves

Goodwin Procter Adds Two Corporate Partners in Hong Kong

Goodwin Procter LLP added Andrew Yang, previously of Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy LLP, and Christopher Yu, formerly of Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP, to its Hong Kong office and Asia practice. 

Yang advises clients on private equity/M&A and U.S. and Hong Kong capital markets transactions. 

Yu focuses on mergers and acquisitions, privatizations of Hong Kong-listed companies and Hong Kong regulatory compliance matters, the firm said.

London Financial Services Partner Joins Paul Hastings

Paul Hastings LLP said financial services regulatory and transactional partner Ben Regnard-Weinrabe, formerly of Hogan Lovells, will join the London office as a partner on June 9.

Regnard-Weinrabe will be part of the global banking and payment systems group. He specializes in financial services regulation, commercial contracts and transactional work for the commercial and retail banking, consumer finance and e-money and payment industries.

Jones Day Adds Washington Government Contracts Partner

Jones Day said Fernand Lavallee joined its Washington office as a partner in the government regulation practice focusing on government contracts. He was formerly a partner in DLA Piper LLP’s Washington office.

Lavallee has represented companies on procurement law matters and has litigated government contracts cases, among other matters.

Australia and Atlanta: New Partner Moves Round-Up

Ashurst LLP’s finance practice added a new partner, Jennifer Schlosser, who joins the Sydney office on July 1. Schlosser, who specializes in the securitization and structured debt capital market areas, joins from King & Wood Mallesons’s Sydney office.

Australian law firm Lander & Rogers said Lisa Gaddie returned to its Melbourne property, projects and infrastructure group from Kliger Partners. She was a partner with Lander & Rogers for almost 10 years before leaving last year.

Taylor English Duma LLP added Glianny Fagundo to the employment, labor and immigration practice group as a partner in Atlanta. Fagundo was previously at Elarbee Thompson LLP.

Also in Atlanta, Boyd Collar Nolen & Tuggle LLC said that former Chief Judge Cynthia D. Wright of the Fulton County Superior Court will join the firm as a partner. Wright was chief judge for two, two-year consecutive terms before stepping down this year. At Boyd Collar, she will expand the firm’s mediation and arbitration practice. 

To contact the reporter on this story: Elizabeth Amon in New York at eamon2@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Michael Hytha at mhytha@bloomberg.net Stephen Farr, David Glovin

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