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Wim Dejonghe recognised as Most Innovative Leader

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News: 06 May 2022

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Allen & Overy Senior Partner, Wim Dejonghe, has been recognised as the Most Innovative Leader at the FT Innovative Lawyer Awards Europe.

Now in his fourth term at the helm of the firm, Wim Dejonghe’s leadership has transformed A&O and had a significant impact on the wider legal market. 

In particular, there have been a number of legal market firsts conceived and sponsored by Wim, including; A&O’s Support and Legal Services Centres, Fuse, the firm’s tech innovation space, and the Market Innovations Group, a pioneer in large-scale regulatory change solutions. Furthermore, A&O Consulting is the first business consulting unit to place financial industry and ex-regulator veterans at the heart of a law firm. 

During Wim’s tenure, A&O has been nominated the most innovative European law firm by the Financial Times on six occasions and has been top three in every year of the awards – a feat that no other law firm has come close to. 

Wim’s achievement follows a similar accolade awarded to Vicki Liu, Managing Partner in Hong Kong. She was recognised as Most Innovative Leader at the FT Innovative Lawyers Awards APAC for her efforts in creating a restructuring and recovery practice, which was the first of its kind in the region. Vicki was also instrumental in forming an alliance between the firm’s Hong Kong office and a local Chinese law firm, allowing A&O to take on cross border matters. 

Commenting on his award, Wim Dejonghe said: “Throughout our business we challenge convention and always seek to do things better. I am proud to have been named as the Most Innovative Leader and also very pleased for the recognition of Vicki’s efforts too. 

We are living in difficult times, but I truly believe that the strength of this firm comes from our ability to pull together and work hard for the benefit of our clients.” 

A&O also won the Responsible Law Firm category for their collaborative pro bono work to provide legal assistance to refugees in Greece and was runner up in the Innovation in the Practice of Law category for their innovative use of a fiducie, similar to an English-law trust, in the first commercial mortgage backed securitisation in France since the financial crash. The firm was highly commended for their tech-enabled Covid-19 force majeure contract review tool that allows for a quick and systematic review of a large number of contracts.