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Leadership round-up: Shebson wins second term at HFW as Norton Rose Fulbright names new global chair

HFW has re-elected managing partner Jeremy Shebson for a second four-year term, effective 1 April 2023.

Shebson, who was originally elected in 2019 to replace the veteran Marcus Bowman, will continue to work alongside HFW’s senior partner Giles Kavanagh, who succeeded veteran Richard Crump this year.

Shebson (pictured), who ran unopposed, said: ‘This is an exciting time for HFW – having invested significantly in expanding internationally and broadening our practices, we now have outstanding lawyers and business services professionals across five continents, and we are seeing that clients increasingly value the fact that, as a sector-focused law firm, we understand their business and their industry, as well as the law.

‘We are now seeking to really ramp things up across our sectors, services, and global network, and will continue to actively target partners, teams and bolt-ons that align with our strategy and that can deliver sustainable, profitable growth.’

During the year, HFW launched a new office in the British Virgin Islands via the acquisition of a disputes business and welcomed 17 new partners and directors across the firm.

In the firm’s last set of financial results, where revenue and PEP dipped 1% each, Shebson revealed he wanted to ‘spread our revenue out internationally’. According to HFW, total international revenue has increased by 75% since 2015.

Kavanagh added: ‘In his first term Jeremy has driven profitability, professionalism, and a collegiate culture at all levels and locations in the firm. His achievements enable us now to embark upon a period of sustained and significant growth. I am looking forward to continuing to work with him to drive the firm forward.’

Elsewhere, Norton Rose Fulbright (NRF) has appointed Australian chair Scott Atkins as its new global chair, effective 1 January 2023.

NRF’s global chair is appointed on an annual basis, and as such Atkins will be replacing the incumbent Farmida Bi, who will stay on as the firm’s EMEA chair.

Atkins will retain his Australian chair role, as well as his responsibilities as global co-head of NRF’s restructuring division and head of risk advisory for Australia.

Gerry Pecht, NRF’s chief executive, commented: ‘Scott is a true firm citizen who never stops prioritising what is best for our clients and our people. His impressive history of leadership roles and experience advising business and governments on international matters will be a tremendous support to our global leadership team.’

Atkins concluded: ‘I am honored and humbled to serve in this global role. My focus will be to support the firm’s leadership to implement our strategy; support our clients as they pursue new frontiers, such as the burgeoning commercial space industry; and above all, to continue to deliver our exceptional standards of client service. Norton Rose Fulbright has tremendous potential leading into 2023, and I look forward to helping the firm seize market opportunities for the benefit of our clients.’