Boies Schiller Flexner LLP today announced that Lawrence Brandman, the former head of derivatives bankruptcy strategy at Lehman Brothers Holdings, and Neil Pigott, a senior UK bankruptcy lawyer, will join the firm as partners. Brandman will be based in New York, and Pigott will be based in London.
The addition of two experienced bankruptcy lawyers advances a key strategic goal for the firm’s new Managing Partners, Nick Gravante and Natasha Harrison, and comes as the world economy braces for bankruptcies and litigation expected to result from the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We identified bankruptcy as a key practice area for the firm last year, and this has become even more important since the pandemic struck in March. Larry and Neil are exactly the right lawyers to help us meet this challenge,” Gravante and Harrison said in a joint statement.
Brandman has 35 years of experience in complex financial products, restructuring, securities and dispute resolution. At Lehman Brothers Holdings in the decade after its bankruptcy, he was responsible for not only developing legal strategies but also resolving the disputes that evolved from the unwinding of its derivatives book after the financial crisis. Larry was lead negotiator in over 500 derivatives and mortgage-related mediations where he recovered billions of dollars.
“Larry is an exceptional lawyer. His experience will be invaluable to our clients as they navigate the fallout from the coronavirus, whatever that might be,” Gravante said.
Prior to Lehman Brothers, Brandman spent nine years as Managing Director at Goldman Sachs New York and before that he was at Credit Suisse First Boston. Brandman graduated magna cum laude from Harvard and earned his JD from Cornell Law School. He is admitted to practice in New York and at the U.S. Supreme Court.
“Having sat across the negotiating table from BSF lawyers during the Lehman bankruptcy litigation, I came to appreciate their impressive talent. I am privileged to become a part of this legendary firm, with its incredible clients, and look forward to helping develop its business,” Brandman said.
Pigott is a senior lawyer who practices in distressed debt, special situations and bankruptcy, as well as disputes involving complex finance documentation. He was counsel at Boies Schiller Flexner in London from 2017 to 2018, and went on to become Executive Director in distressed special situations at Nomura International PLC. Previously, he was an Executive Director at Morgan Stanley for nine years, and he was a Partner in the bankruptcy group at Brown Rudnick.
“I had the pleasure of working with Neil when he was at the firm in 2017 and 2018, and he embodies the best-in-class lawyer who can serve our clients’ needs at the highest level in what are likely to be turbulent times,” Harrison said.
Pigott achieved his LLB Hons from the London School of Economics and is admitted to practice in England and Wales as well as New York. He has been a guest lecturer at Imperial College and at Oxford University’s Said Business School on their respective MBA courses, comparing UK and U.S. restructuring techniques and law.
“Boies Schiller’s reputation in special situations and finance litigation is second-to-none, and respected across the market. I am thrilled to be joining their peerless team at this incredibly significant time,” Pigott said. “As a litigator with a transactional and investor background my experience will combine well with the team’s well known ability to find novel and creative approaches to provide value to clients,” he said.
Boies Schiller Flexner was recently retained by note holders in litigation in the English courts over the restructuring of the British sports car company McLaren, and was also retained by note holders in the insolvency of Germany payments processor Wirecard AG.
The two appointments follow the arrival of former U.S. Department of Justice senior counsel Lauren Bell in Washington D.C. in June, and former Assistant U.S. Attorney John Kucera, who joins in Los Angeles next month, strengthening the firm’s white collar capabilities. Tracey Dovaston, the former Managing Director of Litigation Investigations and Enforcement for the EME region at Barclays, joined the firm in January to further build the regulatory and investigations practice in London. Jesse Panuccio, the former acting Associate Attorney General of the United States, joined the firm in Washington D.C. and Florida in November.