Bloomberg Law
Jan. 9, 2023, 1:29 PM

Wake Up Call: Dechert Leads $1.48 Billion Rare Disease Drug Deal

Rick Mitchell
Rick Mitchell
Freelance Correspondent

Welcome to Bloomberg Law’s Wake Up Call, a daily rundown of the top news for lawyers, law firms, and in-house counsel.

  • Dechert LLP is advising Italian biopharmaceutical company Chiesi Farmaceutici S.p.A. on Chiesi’s $1.48 billion deal to buy Dublin, Ireland-based drug developer Amryt Pharma Plc to get Amryt’s rare disease medicine portfolio. Cooley LLP and Gibson Dunn are advising Amryt Pharma on the transaction, which is expected to close in 2023’s first half, according to a statement. (Globe Newswire)
  • Enterprise management software giant SAP SE poached Bayer AG group top lawyer Gabriel Harnier as the Waldorf, Germany-headquartered multinational’s new general counsel. Harnier replaces Jochen Scholten, according to a German-language report. (
  • Gibson Dunn hired a seven-lawyer team in the United Arab Emirates, opening an office in Abu Dhabi, in an expansion of its 40-year presence in the Middle East. The firm said M&A and project development partners Renad Younes and Samuel Ogunlaja join the new Abu Dhabi office, while corporate and M&A partner Jade Chu will be based in Dubai. All three were previously at Shearman & Sterling, according to their LinkedIn profiles. Abu Dhabi’s evolution into a global energy, finance, and commerce center has led Gibson Dunn to open its Abu Dhabi office, the firm’s chair and managing partner, Barbara Becker, said in a statement. (

Lawyers, Law Firms

  • Hogan Lovells named two Washington-based partners as leaders in its global regulatory practice. It named partner Joanne Rotondi sector leader for its transportation regulatory practice, succeeding Latane Montague. It named partner Jonathan Stoel to take over from Deen Kaplan as co-leader for its international trade & investment practice, alongside existing leader, partner Ajay Kuntamukkala. (
  • Bracewell elected litigation section chair Stephen Crain and power practice chair Ryan Holcomb, both Houston, Texas-based partners, to three-year terms on the firm’s management committee. (Bracewell)
  • A New Jersey judge hit a Pennsylvania lawyer with a $5,000 sanction for attempting to use long, convoluted “boiler-plate” filings to complicate and forestall residential real estate foreclosures. (New Jersey Law Journal)

Laterals, Moves, In-house

  • Akerman picked up Kirkland & Ellis corporate lawyer David Thompson as a partner in Houston, Texas, to expand its M&A and private equity practice. (Akerman)
  • Alston & Bird added real estate finance & investment partners Eric Berardi in Atlanta and Gene Caiola in New York. They both arrive from Kilpatrick Townsend. (
  • Reed Smith’s London office added McGuireWoods private credit attorney Linn Mayhew as a partner in its financial industry group. She was earlier at DLA Piper, Simpson Thacher, and Gibson Dunn. (
  • McGuireWoods Consulting hired Greg Bales, who was senior adviser to former Illinois Democratic Senator Richard Durbin, as a senior vice president in its Illinois Government Relations team. (McGuireWoods)
  • Michael Best & Friedrich added employee benefits & executive compensation lawyer Megan Juel in Chicago as senior counsel. She arrives from Arnold & Porter. (
  • Baker McKenzie hired employment lawyer Tess Lumsdaine as a partner in Hong Kong, from Herbert Smith Freehills. He’s among other things a former attorney at Deloitte Legal. (
  • Big French hotel multinational Accord hired former Allen & Overy corporate attorney Kamal Rhazali as secretary general and general counsel of the luxury and lifestyle division, effective Feb. 1. He arrives from Katara Hospitality, where he was general counsel. (

Promotions effective Jan. 1

To contact the correspondent on this story: Rick Mitchell in Paris at

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Chris Opfer in New York at; Darren Bowman at