Legal Business Blogs

Revolving doors: Hires in London and Asia plus a significant secondee

Last week was another busy week for hires both in private practice and in-house, with Bird & Bird investing in Australian IP, Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP) appointing a financial services regulatory partner in London, and King & Spalding recruiting a Herbert Smith Freehills (HSF) partner in Asia. In-house, Stephenson Harwood seconded a rail partner to head the legal team carrying out the UK’s HS2 project.

Bird & Bird announced the appointment of Jane Owen to head its IP practice in Sydney. Owen, who joins from K&L Gates with 20 years of experience in IP, will work closely with partner Justin Senescall the firm’s regional IP team in Australia and across Asia Pacific.

Commenting on Owens appointment, Matthew Laight, IP head for Bird & Bird in Asia Pacific said: ‘As a part of our Asia Pacific growth strategy, we are building the leading IP practice in Australia including brand capability, IP litigation, commercial IP, licensing and anti-counterfeiting. Jane’s impressive experience and first-class reputation will enable us to pursue our ambitious plans to establish a top tier IP practice in Australia, which is an important part of our IP and broader practice across the wider Asia Pacific region.’

Meanwhile, in the City, Bird & Bird lost partner Martin Sandler to BLP as a partner in its litigation and dispute resolution team. He will work in the financial services regulatory team and report into Sidney Myers, head of financial regulation.

Sandler advises on financial services law and regulation and his experience covers a wide array of advisory matters, structures and transactions for clients but has experience of trading and markets, having spent 10 years as a lawyer on Bank of America Merrill Lynch’s trading floor and head of UK legal and counsel at NYSE Euronext.

Jonathan Sacher, BLP’s head of the litigation and dispute resolution team, said: “There is a clear market opportunity to create an internationally-connected financial services regulatory offering to assist clients in navigating the global regulatory reform and structural market changes we are currently seeing. Martin will play a key role in this and help us broaden the scope of our capabilities in this field.

In Asia, King & Spalding recruited Richard Nelson from HSF in Singapore, where he is a partner and head of its energy practice in South East Asia. He will join the firm’s Singapore office though a start date has yet to be confirmed.

He has worked in the region for over 10 years and has worked across oil and gas, LNG and power in countries including Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar and Thailand.

And finally, there was a significant secondment in-house, with Stephenson Harwood partner Suzanne Tarplee appointed interim general counsel (GC) and company secretary of High Speed Two (HS2) Limited. The secondment began at the start of March and As GC and company secretary, Tarplee will manage both an in-house legal team and external law firms as the £50bn project moves into its procurement and implementation phase.