Clifford Chance appoints Charles Adams as new global managing partner

Based in Milan, Adams will be the Magic Circle firm’s first non-UK-based global chief.

Posted Friday, December 17th 2021
Clifford Chance appoints Charles Adams as new global managing partner

Currently the firm’s regional managing partner for Continental Europe, banking and finance expert Charles Adams has been named as Clifford Chance’s global managing partner.

Dual qualified in Italy and England & Wales, Adams is fluent in French and Spanish as well as English and Italian, and has spent most of his adult life in Italy. His term as global managing partner will begin on 1 May 2022, around the time of the 30th anniversary of his arrival at Clifford Chance.

Even before becoming regional manager partner in 2018, Adams was no stranger to leadership positions: between 2007 and 2014 he was managing partner of Clifford Chance’s Italian offices. He takes over his new position from London-based corporate partner Matthew Layton, who by April 2022 will have completed the second of two four-year terms. Layton had a remarkably successful tenure, entrenching the firm’s position in global financial services advice, bolstering presence in the Americas and the Asia-Pacific region, and boosting global revenues by 35%; the firm made £1.8 billion last year. Even more impressively, Layton oversaw a 65% increase in profits per equity partner.

Adams has big shoes to fill, but his longstanding banking and finance expertise will help the firm strategically navigate the rapidly changing world of financial services, traditionally Clifford Chance’s core area of strength. He also has experience in restructuring and insolvency – a busy area for the firm around the world – and project finance.