Five more firms step up to rescue KWM trainees

Five more firms have confirmed that they will be taking on King & Wood Mallesons (KWM) trainees as it finally enters administration.

Magic circle giant Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer has confirmed three KWM trainees will join the firm, one from the August 2015 intake, one from the February 2016 intake and one from the August 2016 intake. It is also taking on a member of KWM’s business services team as a consultant.

Baker McKenzie will take on three trainees, having already hired employment partner Carl Richards and corporate partner William Holder from the ill-fated firm.

A Baker McKenzie spokesperson said: “We are happy to confirm that we have offered three current KWM trainees the opportunity to continue their training with Baker McKenzie in London, and they will join us as trainees subject to the SRA completing the formalities for the training contract transfers. In the meantime, we have actively sought to offer them interim roles to bridge the gap for them before they can formally become our trainees.”

Osborne Clarke has also confirmed that two KWM trainees have interviewed and accepted offers.

Meanwhile, Lawyer 2B understands that Stephenson Harwood has hired a fourth-seat trainee along with the three private equity partners it took from KWM in the first week of January, and that the firm is speaking to other trainees as well. 

And a spokesperson for Fieldfisher said: “We can confirm that we have an opening for one KWM trainee. We have received a number of applications and are currently interviewing candidates.”

The KWM trainee diaspora: confirmed so far

Ashurst: expecting to take ‘at least three‘ trainees

Baker McKenzie: taking three

Covington & Burling: expecting to take two

Fieldfisher: currently interviewing for one role

Freshfields: taking three

Fried Frank: taking three

Goodwin Procter: taking five

Hogan Lovells: expecting to take two

Macfarlanes: taking two

Osborne Clarke: taking two

Stephenson Harwood: has taken one, and talking to others