Garry Manley, a former head boy of St. Ninian’s High School who went on to become an international corporate lawyer, is returning to his Isle of Man roots and joining leading law firm Cains.
He joins from New York-headquartered international law firm Cleary Gottlieb, which, with 16 offices spread across the world, is one of the world’s leading corporate law firms.
Garry, 32, joined Cleary Gottlieb (whose clients include Google, Coca-Cola, Walt Disney and the governments of Greece, Russia and Argentina) in London in 2007. He has also worked in New York from 2008 to 2009 and Hong Kong from 2011 to 2015.
He has broad transactional experience, having advised extensively on cross-border mergers and acquisitions, capital markets and financing transactions. He joins Cains as a senior legal adviser in the corporate department, headed by Richard Vanderplank.
“My wife, Simone, and I always expected to come back to the Isle of Man at some point, which is why I have always held onto my Isle of Man variant British passport!” explained Garry.
“Cains is the Isle of Man’s leading corporate law firm, so it was the obvious place for me to continue my career having made the decision to come home and I am excited to join the team. I think it is crucial for lawyers to work collaboratively to serve the interests of their clients, and that is very much the model operated by Cains.”
Andrew Corlett OBE, Chairman of Cains Group, said: “I was in the same class at school as Garry’s dad, John, and I am so pleased Garry is joining us. It is terrific to see such a talented and internationally experienced Manxman wanting to come home and contribute to the development of Cains and the Isle of Man.”
Garry left the Isle of Man in 2003 to study law at Oxford University, where he graduated with a first class degree. He was placed ninth in his year at Oxford out of more than 250 students and received the Quadrant Chambers Prize for achieving the highest mark in the University in one of his papers.
He transferred to Cleary Gottlieb’s New York office in September 2008 at the height of the financial crisis, when the eyes of the world were on Wall Street. One of the highlights of his career to date was attending the infamous seven-hour Bankruptcy Court hearing that approved the sale of Lehman Brothers’ investment bank to Barclays (described by Judge James Peck as “the most momentous bankruptcy hearing I’ve ever sat through.”)
Another stand-out deal was advising VTB, Russia’s second largest bank, on a sale of US$3.5 billion worth of shares by the Russian Government. “It was particularly rewarding to be able to share with my parents back on the Isle of Man a BBC News story showing Mr. Putin putting pen to paper on the deal I had put together,” Garry added.
Garry’s final deal at Cleary saw him advise one of the members of the consortium that agreed in December 2016 to buy a 61 per cent stake in National Grid’s gas distribution business. With a total enterprise value of around £13.8 billion, the Financial Times described the deal as “one of the biggest British infrastructure deals in recent history”.
Married with a two-year-old daughter, Garry admits that another reason for returning is family, with both his and his wife Simone’s families living in the Isle of Man.
“We felt the time was right to come back. We wanted Sophia to have her grandparents nearby and to benefit from the education and lifestyle that we experienced growing up here. I received a first class education at St. Ninian’s and I hope to be able to contribute something back to the wider island community in return for the opportunities it has given me and my family.”
Garry realised he wanted to be a lawyer when he was 10-years-old and watching the O. J. Simpson trial with his father. His family has, over several generations, had close links with the law; his father was the Isle of Man’s last prosecuting sergeant before the role was taken over by the Attorney General’s office. His grandmother, Margaret Corkill, was the Isle of Man’s first woman police officer and his grandfather, Archie, was also a police sergeant.
A keen swimmer, he participated in three Island Games and previously held a number of junior and senior national records. “I will certainly be looking to renew my interest in competitive swimming as well as other sports,” he added.