Baker McKenzie has hired Andrew Sagor, a former Kirkland & Ellis partner, to co-lead the firm’s leveraged finance practice in New York.
Sagor is a former State Department official who has also worked at Milbank and Paul Weiss. He’s at least the third leveraged finance lawyer the firm has hired this year after it brought on Rob Mathews and David Becker from White & Case in London in January.
Leveraged finance has been an increasingly active practice for Big Law firms as the asset class has grown to more than $1 trillion in outstanding loans—more than doubling in value since 2012. Leveraged loans are made to companies that ratings agencies have already deemed risky due to their outstanding debt burdens. They are most frequently used in private equity deals.
Sagor said he had been impressed with Baker McKenzie’s recent investments in its transactions practice in the U.S. and U.K. Baker McKenzie in April hired former Milbank M&A partner Mark Mandel in New York and in August hired Skadden’s former corporate and M&A leader from Palo Alto.
“Baker is really well-poised to help private equity investors in this globalized world because the firm has expertise not just in the major money centers around the world, but in other places where private equity is reaching out,” Sagor said.
Sagor’s work has involved advising companies and private equity firms such as Colfax Corp. and Brookfield Business Partners on multi-million or multi-billion dollar deals.
He has also been involved in a group of conservative lawyers that has spoken out against President Donald Trump. Sagor signed an open letter released on Oct. 10 by Checks and Balances that admonished his communications with the president of Ukraine regarding Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden.
Sagor’s involvement with Checks and Balances has been an individual capacity and he said it had no impact on his professional career in law firms.