Cadwalader Adds Leading Specialty Finance and Securitization Partner Ryan McNaughton

April 19, 2023

Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft LLP has announced that Ryan McNaughton has joined as a partner in Cadwalader’s market-leading securitization and structured finance practice. McNaughton joins Cadwalader from King & Spalding. 

McNaughton represents banks, broker-dealers and other financial institutions and private equity and asset management firms as issuers, underwriters, lenders and investors in structured and corporate finance transactions, securities offerings (public and private) and credit facilities. McNaughton has a particular focus on esoteric asset-backed securities (ABS), including asset classes and transactions such as whole business and other operating asset securitizations, music and media royalty transactions, oil and gas interests, franchise concepts, digital infrastructure, cell towers, data center and distributed antenna operators, solar and renewable energy assets, transportation assets, outdoor advertising receivables, ground leases, and specialty real estate lending transactions.

McNaughton’s addition expands Cadwalader’s leveraged and acquisition finance capabilities, as he regularly advises private equity and asset management firms and investors in the structuring, diligence and execution of asset-based acquisition financings and related warehousing and securitizations. McNaughton will be reunited with his former colleagues Ronald Lovelace, Patrick Yingling, Jared Zajac and Joseph Polonsky, a market-leading leveraged finance team from King & Spalding that also recently joined Cadwalader, and who had all worked closely with McNaughton in executing some of the largest whole business securitizations and novel structured leveraged finance transactions in the market. Over the last decade, McNaughton has been opposite Cadwalader partners Stuart Goldstein and Ira Schacter on several novel securitization transactions, and was well aware of Cadwalader’s place as one of the pioneers in the development of using structured finance and securitization as a corporate financing tool.

In addition McNaughton expects a number of former colleagues will be joining him in the near future.

Cadwalader was once again the leading law firm advising across securitization markets, including ABS, CLOs, CMBS, RMBS and GSE multifamily MBS, in 2022. Based on 2022 industry league tables, the firm advised issuers and underwriters on the largest number of transactions – 160 transactions as issuer’s counsel, valued at approximately $115.8 billion, and 220 transactions as underwriters’ counsel, valued at approximately $138 billion.

McNaughton has recently structured the two largest music royalty transactions in the 144A market, as well as several private oil and gas securitization transactions.

“We are very excited to have Ryan join our firm,” said Cadwalader managing partner Pat Quinn. “We are already considered the dominant transatlantic firm in structured finance. Ryan's arrival will significantly enhance our existing capabilities and strengthen our first-rate ABS practice.”

Added Capital Markets co-chair Stuart Goldstein: “Ryan will be instrumental in expanding our capital markets and corporate finance capabilities – particularly important in today’s environment, as clients continue to seek innovative ways to finance M&A and other transactions. We are excited to grow our team with Ryan and his market-leading practice.”

Cadwalader has consistently earned considerable market recognition, including: Law360 2022 “Practice Group of the Year” in the Structured Finance category; “CMBS Law Firm of the Year” and advisor on “CMBS Deal of the Year” and “Middle Market CLO Deal of the Year” transactions as part of the GlobalCapital 2022 U.S. Securitization awards; and “Team of the Year” in “Structured Finance and Securitization” as part of the International Financial Law Review (IFLR) 2022 Europe Awards.

“Cadwalader provides me with a unique opportunity to be part of one of the best and largest structured finance platforms in the world, paired with a strong leveraged finance team that understands how these transactions actually work,” McNaughton said. “My wide-ranging ABS work fits in very comfortably with Cadwalader’s capabilities. It’s rare to have a structured finance-focused firm that has broad ranging esoteric capabilities coupled with a leveraged finance team that understands the transactions and how to structure flexible, compatible financings. I’m looking forward to working again with Ron, Patrick, Jared and Joey, and with Cadwalader’s outstanding transatlantic structured finance team.”

Cadwalader has been steadily expanding its partnership ranks over the past 18 months. In addition to the leveraged finance team of Lovelace, Yingling, Zajac, and Polonsky and  leveraged finance partner Matthew Smith in London, the firm has added: Financial Restructuring partners Mike Rupe and Bevis Metcalfe, Global Litigation partners Gina Castellano, Martin Weinstein, Jeffrey Clark, Kenneth Breen, Phara Guberman, and Helen Maher; Corporate partners Michael Pinnisi and Kiran Kadekar; Tax partners Andrew Carlon and Jon Brose; Finance partners Sukhvir Basran and Angela Batterson; and Financial Services partners Alix Prentice, Peter Malyshev and Mercedes Tunstall.