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Maples Group Appoints Chris Newton as BVI Managing Partner

05 Dec 2023

Maples and Calder, the Maples Group's law firm, is pleased to announce the appointment of Chris Newton as the new Managing Partner of its British Virgin Islands ("BVI") office. Chris succeeds Richard May, who retires from the firm after almost 13 years of dedicated service, eight of which he spent as the BVI Managing Partner.

Based in the BVI for over a decade, Chris has been instrumental in propelling the success of the BVI's Corporate, Finance, Restructuring and Insolvency practices over the past seven years. His extensive experience encompasses a wide range of corporate and finance matters, with particular expertise in complex restructuring matters as reflected by his 'Leading Individual' ranking in The Legal 500 with clients praising him for "his attention to detail and practical implementation when navigating challenging restructuring and other projects". Chris is renowned for providing strategic counsel to clients across the Group's global network and playing a pivotal role in transactions involving listed companies, secured lending and a number of headline restructuring transactions in the jurisdiction. His insights into the evolving demands of public companies are invaluable. Recent deal highlights include advising Biohaven on the largest-ever take-private in the BVI, leading a multi-disciplinary team on the global restructuring of Constellation Group which was valued at over US$1.5 billion and involved court proceeding in the BVI, Brazil and the US, advising Swvl Holdings on its listing by way of de-spac, the first-ever US$1 billion plus unicorn from the Middle East to trade on NASDAQ and more recently, working as part of a global team on the US$30 billion restructuring of China Evergrande Group.

Chris will work alongside BVI Practice Group Leaders Ruairi Bourke (co-head of Corporate, Finance and Funds & Investment Management), Joanna Russell (co-head of Funds & Investment Management) and Matthew Freeman (head of Dispute Resolution & Insolvency). The team is further supported by a global BVI practice, under the global leadership of Michael Gagie and European oversight by Matthew Gilbert. The global practice boasts 23 Partners with dedicated BVI practices in Asia, Dubai and London, ensuring that clients benefit from tailored, time zone-aligned support and advice that seamlessly accommodates their business needs.

Upon accepting his new role, Chris expressed his gratitude, saying, "I am deeply honoured by the confidence my colleagues have placed in me by appointing me as the Managing Partner of our BVI office. It is a privilege to lead such a talented team in the BVI. Under Richard's exemplary leadership over the last eight years, our BVI law firm has flourished and I am committed to building on his success to ensure that we continue to provide the highest level of service to our clients."

Global Managing Partner Jonathan Green said, "Our BVI practice is a cornerstone of the Maples Group's global jurisdictional offering and I have every confidence that Chris will further strengthen and enhance our capabilities in the BVI. Chris is an exceedingly impressive and capable lawyer and his extensive experience and in-depth knowledge of the BVI will undoubtedly make him an exceptional leader."

The Maples Group is one of the longest established law firms in the territory, providing a comprehensive range of BVI legal, corporate formation and administration services to international clients including institutional, banking, financial and commercial clients. With 40 lawyers and professionals based on the ground, the team is renowned for acting on high profile cross border transactions and disputes and is consistently ranked in the top-tier categories of leading legal directories such as Chambers and Partners, IFLR1000 and The Legal 500.

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