Cadwalader Expands Top-Rated European Capital Markets Team with Addition of Matthew Duncan

July 20, 2020

New London partner focuses on asset-backed securities, with an emphasis on consumer, real estate and fintech.

Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft LLP today announced that Matthew Duncan has joined the firm as a partner in London, strengthening the firm’s market-leading European Capital Markets team.

Duncan advises a wide range of institutions and other entities that operate, invest in or deal with businesses that provide financial services and products to the consumer, financial, commercial and public sectors in the United Kingdom and other jurisdictions. His work covers the entire life cycle, from establishing origination platforms to warehousing, portfolio sales and purchases, and term capital markets financings, as well as developing new retail financial products. Duncan has experience in an array of financings and transaction structures, including those involving residential mortgages, consumer and commercial loans, commercial mortgages, leases, insurance contracts, auto/vehicle supply contracts, student accommodation receivables, social housing, commercial real estate, infrastructure assets, ground rents, residuals from structured finance transactions, Islamic/Shari'a assets and other receivables and assets.

He joins the firm from Morgan Lewis, where he was a partner.

“Matthew is a leading figure in London and throughout Europe because of his leadership and innovation in capital markets financings,” said Cadwalader managing partner Pat Quinn. “That’s why Matthew will be a perfect fit for our top-rated Capital Markets team in London.”

Duncan has been involved in a number of ground-breaking transactions, including: the first U.K. post-crisis single issuer segregated multi-issuance residential mortgage backed securities program 2.0; the first U.K. covered bond program; the first U.K. delinked, single issuer master trust residential mortgage backed securities program; the first U.K. single issuer segregated multi-issuance residential mortgage backed securities program, and others.

Duncan will join a London securitization and structured finance practice that is widely recognized for its market leadership in asset-backed securitization (ABS), collateralised loan obligations (CLOs), insurance-linked securities (ILS), commercial mortgage-backed securitization (CMBS) and alternative finance and marketplace lending, throughout Europe and the U.S. The Cadwalader team advises leading financial institutions and corporations on high-volume, challenging transactions while remaining at the forefront of new and growing product areas.

“In Matthew, we are adding a Chambers-rated lawyer with an established history of working on cutting-edge transactions,” said Cadwalader’s Stuart Goldstein, who co-leads the firm’s global Capital Markets group. “His addition continues to build out our industry leadership and deep bench in asset-backed securitization and fintech transactions in London, across Europe and globally.”

Added Michael Gambro, the Capital Markets group co-leader: “Over the past few years, we have been very successful in expanding our client service capabilities with the addition and promotion of top-rated lawyers in London and the U.S. This is truly a global team that is second to none.”

Duncan has achieved many notable professional accomplishments throughout his career. He is a “Ranked Individual” in Capital Markets: Securitisation for London by Chambers & Partners UK and is listed as a “Leading Individual” in Structured Products and Securitisation for London by The Legal 500 UK. He is the author of the legal textbook for solicitors titled Guarantors: A Practical Handbook for Giving Independent Legal Advice (1997; 1999 Supplement; 2003 Second Edition) and also won a Fulbright Fellowship in U.S. Securities and Investments Law in 1993. Furthermore, Duncan was nominated by the Bank of England as a member of the AFME Working Group for Standardisation of Securitisation Documentation in response to the financial crisis.

"A wider range of clients, from lenders to platforms, funds and fintechs, are using structured finance and securitizations to raise finance at lower investment grade pricing from a wider range of sources,” Duncan said. “Furthermore, insurers, reinsurers, pension funds, asset managers, credit funds and others, across the globe, are using them to deploy capital and achieve yield at low risk, evidenced by investment grade ratings. And these transactions are involving a wider range of assets, from the mainstream, such as residential mortgages and commercial real estate, to the more esoteric, such as infrastructure, shared ownership housing, public sector assets, leisure receivables and so on. All of this is within a context of fast-changing and uncertain economic conditions, a large volume of ongoing legal developments, and the use of innovative technologies, including artificial intelligence, smart contracts, tokenisation of assets using blockchain and so on.”

He added, “I am very excited to join Cadwalader's cutting-edge team, as it has the breadth, strength and depth to provide clients with the sophisticated legal advice, innovation and execution they need to achieve success in this diversified challenging landscape, not only in tailoring financing techniques, but also tax, regulatory and fintech aspects."

Duncan is the newest member of an expanding London office, which has grown with the recent additions of white collar partners Mark Beardsworth and Kevin Roberts, fund formation partner Michael Newell, fund finance partner Samantha Hutchinson, and real estate finance partner Duncan Hubbard, as well as the recently announced election to partner of fund finance lawyer Nathan Parker and corporate lawyer Joanna Valentine.

“Matthew has built a great practice and a great reputation in London,” said Cadwalader’s London managing partner, Gregory Petrick. “We are very excited that he will be a part of our expansion plans and what is shaping up as a very bright future.”

Cadwalader plans to relocate next month to new premises at 100 Bishopsgate that will double its headcount capacity for 130 attorneys, Petrick added.