Latham Leadership Honored at 2022 Financial Times Innovative Lawyers North America Awards

December 8, 2022
Financial Times
Chair and Managing Partner Rich Trobman named Most Innovative Leader; firm garners three finalist recognitions for transactional and litigation successes.

Rich Trobman, Chair and Managing Partner of Latham & Watkins, has received the Most Innovative Leader award in the 2022 Financial Times Innovative Lawyers North America report, which also commended several firm practice-specific initiatives and ranked Latham among the most innovative law firms.

The Financial Times recognized Trobman’s record of success over more than 30 years at Latham, particularly since becoming Chair and Managing Partner in 2018. Trobman attributes part of Latham’s notable success over the past three years to the firm’s “focus on investing for the future rather than purely on short-term measures of success.”

The firm was also cited in the report for client work and practice leadership, including:

  • Standout recognition for Innovation in Reinventing Legal Practice for capitalizing on the growth of Private Capital in the global market. According to the Financial Times: “The firm has connected up practice areas dealing with private capital clients. The leadership committee for this initiative is drawn from different disciplines and aims to identify opportunities for better coordination and strengthening client relationships.” Through this initiative, Latham leverages the firm's top-tier strength to seamlessly advise market participants on complex domestic and cross-border private capital transactions, including buyouts, carve-outs, asset M&A, activist transactions, venture capital investments, capital raising, front-end direct lending and leveraged finance, corporate reorganizations, restructurings and insolvencies, distressed investing and special situations, PIPE transactions, preferred equity and convertible debt, asset-backed securitisations and financings, infrastructure financings, and project finance.
  • Commended in the Innovation in Market Firsts category for representing LFG NFTs, Corp. (Autograph) in connection with Autograph’s creation and sale of NFTs using Tony Hawk’s name, image and likeness, and in connection with Autograph’s subsequent three party agreement with Tony Hawk and Bacasable Global (operators of The Sandbox metaverse platform) to develop playable versions of those NFTs for use as in-game items in a Tony Hawk metaverse skate park playable in The Sandbox
  • Commended in the Innovation in Dispute Resolution category for the representation of ZF Automotive US, Inc. by a cross-border, cross-practice team that delivered a unanimous US Supreme Court win in ZF Automotive US, Inc. v. Luxshare, Ltd. The case presented the question whether a private commercial arbitration abroad qualifies as a “foreign or international tribunal” for purposes of 28 U.S.C. 1782, which authorizes federal district courts to compel discovery in service of proceedings before such tribunals abroad. The Court held that Section 1782 does not cover purely private commercial arbitrations, and it accordingly rejected Luxshare’s request for discovery from ZF. The Court’s holding will have wide-reaching effects for businesses and individuals with arbitration agreements worldwide, and will ensure that parties to foreign commercial arbitrations cannot improperly take advantage of discovery in US courts.