Ropes & Gray Adds Two Finance Partners in New York

October 7, 2019

Global law firm Ropes & Gray LLP announced today the arrival of prominent partner Leonard Klingbaum and rising star Andrea Hwang in the firm’s New York office. Mr. Klingbaum and Ms. Hwang will expand Ropes & Gray’s market-leading global finance practice, which represents many of the most sophisticated private investment firms, direct lenders, financial institutions, and private and public companies.

Clients turn to Ropes & Gray’s finance, special situations and restructuring attorneys for their expertise in leveraged transactions, private credit and bespoke financing transactions, distressed lending, restructurings, fund finance, complex securitizations, and public company financings. Mr. Klingbaum and Ms. Hwang bring deep complementary experience to the firm’s clients. Each has guided sophisticated financing transactions across industries for credit funds, hedge funds and private equity firms, as well as private and public companies. 

“Leonard and Andrea add additional strength to Ropes & Gray’s market-leading finance offering to private equity firms, direct lending platforms, and alternative asset managers, especially those engaged in the most innovative financings and deals that require deep market knowledge as well as creativity,” said managing partner-elect David Djaha. “They bring additional breadth and depth to our finance practice, and are important additions to our growing 350-lawyer New York office, which is now one of the largest in Manhattan.”

“Both Leonard and Andrea excel at handling complicated financing transactions,” said Stefanie Birkmann, who co-chairs Ropes & Gray’s global finance practice. “Their experience is a natural fit for our clients, including the private investment firms and direct lenders, financial institutions and companies that our team already guides through complex financings, restructurings and securitizations.”

Leonard Klingbaum

Leonard Klingbaum is an accomplished leveraged finance attorney with over 20 years of experience representing lenders and borrowers in a variety of bespoke lending transactions, including stressed and distressed financing transactions, in addition to companies involved in Chapter 11 proceedings and restructurings. In 2018, Mr. Klingbaum led a team that was named a finalist in The American Lawyer’s 2018 Global Legal Awards. A versatile attorney, Mr. Klingbaum has handled a wide range of sophisticated financing matters including specialty lending matters, DIP financings, distressed lending, work-outs, and restructurings. His current client roster includes direct lenders and hedge funds, specialty lending and special situations firms, and public and private companies.

Andrea Hwang

Andrea Hwang brings more than 10 years of experience to Ropes & Gray representing private equity sponsors, private credit funds, and public and private companies in a wide array of transactions, including acquisition financings, recapitalizations and refinancings.  With Mr. Klingbaum, Ms. Hwang was a member of the team of attorneys that counseled on a major restructuring matter that was named a finalist for The American Lawyer’s 2018 Global Legal Awards. Insight Venture Partners, Genstar Capital and GSO Capital Partners are among the many private equity sponsors and credit funds she has represented in financing transactions. 

“A combination of factors contributed to our decision to join Ropes & Gray: the firm’s impressive client base paired with its excellent reputation in leveraged finance, restructuring and special situations, and the firm’s growth across offices and, in particular, in New York,” Mr. Klingbaum said. 

“The caliber of the clients who turn to Ropes & Gray is outstanding. Leonard and I are pleased to have the opportunity to join one of the best finance teams working on highly sophisticated deals,” Ms. Hwang said.

Ropes & Gray is one of the 20 largest law firms in New York. In 2019 the firm has added prominent partners to its New York practices, including business restructuring partner Cristine Pirro Schwarzman in September, and private equity partner Carolyn Vardi in January. In 2018, the firm added business restructuring partner Matthew Roose, capital markets partner Paul Tropp.