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25 February 2020

Ashurst targets West Coast projects work with Los Angeles office launch

Second US office is latest stage of plan to grow UK-based firm's global projects business

Ashurst to open in Los Angeles

Office head Anna Hermelin: LA office will allow firm 'to capitalise further on significant market opportunities'

Ashurst has opened an office in Los Angeles, its second in the US after New York.

The office will be led by partner Anna Hermelin, who is qualified in California and UK law, and will focus on projects and project finance in the transport and social infrastructure sectors.

Hermelin, who has relocated from Japan, will be joined by three associates.

Lee McDonald, co-head of Ashurst's global projects and real estate division, said the firm’s global projects team had experienced “outstanding growth” and it would continue to invest in the practice area.

Global managing partner Paul Jenkins added: “We are very serious about our goal to become one of the world's leading projects, project finance and infrastructure firms.”

In September the UK-based firm hired Betty Cerini in New York from Hunton Andrews Kurth to be co-chair of its Americas infrastructure team in what it dubbed a ‘landmark hire’.

Hermelin said opening in LA would allow the firm “to capitalise further on significant market opportunities”.

Ashurst's US team advises public authorities on infrastructure procurements carried out using various procurement methods, as well as sponsors, financing parties and government agencies.

Last year, the firm advised the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey on several major components of the $2.7bn Newark Liberty International Airport Terminal One redevelopment programme, which is due to be fully operational in 2022.

It is the largest design-build project in New Jersey’s history.

In 2015, a strategy reveiw by consultants Bain & Co advised the firm to build its infrastructure capability.

Meanwhile, ealier this month London-based Withers added three lawyers to its Los Angeles office to further support its US growth strategy.

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