The law firm of Winston & Strawn today announced that it will open a m…

The law firm of Winston & Strawn today announced that it will open a much anticipated London office with two partners, heavily experienced in international transactions, who will join Winston from the London office of Morgan, Lewis & Bockius.

Mr. Thomas J. Benz, a partner in the Morgan Lewis securities practice, and Ms. Zoe J. Ashcroft, a partner in the Morgan Lewis business transactions practice (and an English solicitor), will continue to focus their work on a variety of corporate transactions. Mr. Benz’s practice emphasizes corporate finance transactions, including securities and banking, Euromarket public and private offerings, syndicated loans and related programs for lenders, underwriters, borrowers, and issuers; as well as U. S. public and private offerings for foreign issuers.

Ms. Ashcroft has focused her practice over the last 12 years on UK business and finance law. She has handled UK national and cross-border transactions, including mergers and acquisitions, strategic alliances and joint ventures, private equity investments and venture capital financing. In addition, Ms. Ashcroft has experience in securities offerings, including advising entities on London Stock Exchange and Alternative Investment Market listings, as well as listings in conjunction with NASDAQ and the New York Stock Exchange. Ms. Ashcroft was admitted as a solicitor of the Supreme Court of England and Wales in 1989 and was also admitted as a solicitor of the Supreme Court of Hong Kong in 1990.

In addition to existing international corporate transactions and international finance experience, Winston expects to add quickly to its London practice, including broader capabilities in project finance, already an area of great strength for the firm. Like their recently opened San Francisco office, the firm’s move to London is responsive to client demand.

According to Winston & Strawn’s chairman, Governor James R. Thompson, “This is an extraordinary opportunity for us to open a London office with exceptionally talented lawyers.”

“We believe Tom and Zoe bring the depth of experience we have been looking for in London and will provide us with the range of skills we need to continue building our international presence. They complement our existing practices in Paris and Geneva as well as our U.S. corporate work,” added James M. Neis, Winston & Strawn’s managing partner.

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