Leading International Counsel in Private Investment Fund
Ever since she can remember, Nadia Bonnet wanted to be a lawyer. However, as the daughter of a Moroccan immigrant couple in France, an ‘outsider’, people kept telling her to be grateful to live in that beautiful country, without aiming too high!
Not one to be easily daunted, Nadia studied hard, discovered a real passion for law, and became a Lawyer. After spending 15+ years in the field, today she is a reputed Authority in the world of Private Investment Funds.
“No matter what your dream is, it is worth pursuing. I am truly passionate about law and my job. I felt in my guts that this is what I was made for and worked hard to achieve my career goals. Law is my art and helping my clients achieve the best outcome and structure the right vehicle that fits their legal and business needs gives me a lot of satisfaction.”
Given her social background, Nadia knew it wouldn’t be easy to reach the goal she had set for herself. But as someone who thrives on challenges, nothing could distract her from her goal. Her role model was Maître Jacque Verges, a renowned French lawyer who defended Omar Raddad, pro bono. After the murder of a wealthy widow, her gardener Omar, a Moroccan immigrant, was arrested and convicted.
“At 12, I read a book on that story and decided I want to become a lawyer and defend innocent people. Omar never stopped claiming his innocence. This case felt very close to me as I thought it could have been my own dad, unfairly convicted for a crime he could never have committed, given all circumstances and evidence provided.”
After a Bachelor’s in Business Law and Master’s in European Business Law from the Université de Franche-Comté, Nadia passed the Bar in Luxembourg, where she could practice in both English and French. In Luxembourg, she discovered the Investment Fund industry and specialized as a Private Fund Attorney. Luxembourg is the second largest funds jurisdiction after the U.S. and is the place where U.S. and other global asset managers launch many investment funds. Nadia herself has advised many U.S. asset managers.
Today, she is heading the Luxembourg funds practice at the very prestigious U.S. law firm Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP. She is an expert in guiding U.S. and international sponsors on the formation of funds and other investment vehicles in Luxembourg and across Europe, as well as in related distribution and other activities.
Over her decade long career, she has represented many sponsors of private investment funds such as: LVMH and Groupe Arnault in the structuring and lifecycle of their Real Estate Funds and in their strategic partnership with Catterton; GCM Grosvenor; and Edmond de Rothschild Private Equity.
A Global Expert in Private Fund Formation and Investment matters, Nadia has written articles for various international publications and addressed several panels and seminars all over the world. She is a member of the board of managers of the Luxembourg American Chamber of Commerce. In July 2023, she received the ‘Outstanding Leadership Award’ at the Law 2.0 conference in Las Vegas.
As of today, she continues to live and work in New York, where she always dreamt of living. She worked towards that goal and relocated to New York with her family in 2018. She is happily married and has two beautiful daughters. And she now believes in never giving up on dreams, learning to endure every adversity, and staying true to her
“In my early years I naively thought that if I worked hard my superiors would promote me. So I worked hard, never complained, took last minute assignments, worked nights and weekends. I grew very frustrated as no promotion was coming along. Others around me were promoted much quicker. It took me quite some time to learn the lesson that ‘you must forge your own path’ and that nothing is granted. A promotion is not just given without one asking for it. It is up to each one to seize the opportunities to achieve professional goals and aspirations.”
As a self empowered woman, Nadia knows that life is not a walk in the park, and for those with high aspirations, discipline, strength and resilience are key. Adding to that thought, she says, “No one in this world achieves success alone. I was fortunate to always have the support of my family and friends, and the unwavering and priceless backing of my husband who pushed me to achieve my goals. We are all social beings. And thus I believe in creating strong teams connected by trust and a sense of belonging in my professional and personal life.”