22 Apr 2022

Ashurst makes up 25 in record partner promotions round

Ongoing strength of transactional market sees corporate and funds groups dominate

Briony Holcombe (l) and Annalisa Santini Images courtesy of Ashurst

UK law firm Ashurst has promoted 25 lawyers to partner in its latest round, its highest number to date. 

The latest cohort, almost half of which is made up of lawyers in the firm’s Australian offices and the rest in Europe, is a marked step up on the previous two years, with 14 getting the nod in 2021 and 15 the year before. 

This round also features 12 women, 48% of the total, representing a decrease from the last two rounds when a whopping 78% and 66% of those made up were women. The firm said that since 2014 it has promoted 80 women to the partnership – almost half of the total. 

Ashurst CEO, Paul Jenkins, pointed to significant client demand and the ongoing strength of the transactional market as the driver behind the majority of the promotions (56%) going to lawyers in the firm’s corporate and finance and funds and restructuring groups. 

The ten City lawyers to get the nod included four in the corporate transactions practice – Francesca Downes, Jacob Gold, Dallan Pitman and Molly Woods. Briony Holcombe and Matthew Pentecost were welcomed in the global loans team, with the London cohort completed with a promotion apiece in the global markets, restructuring, special situations and insolvency, transport and infrastructure and dispute resolution groups. 

Annalisa Santini also got the nod in the global loans team in Milan alongside M&A and joint venture specialist Annamaria Pinzuti in the energy and infrastructure department. 

The final promotion in the global loans team went to Campbell Johnston in Melbourne, which also saw a lawyer made up in the IP/media team and another in the dispute resolution group. Rounding out the Melbourne promotions was Gwladys Ngo Tedga Yagla, who leads the risk modernisation practice within the risk advisory component of Ashurst’s consultancy arm. 

Also made up in the risk advisory group was Sydney-based director Matthew Worsfold, who specialises in risk analytics. Nathan Bellgrave, who heads the firm’s NewLaw division Ashurst Advance in Asia Pacific, was also made up in Sydney, as was one lawyer each in the transport and infrastructure, tax and dispute resolution teams. 

Construction and infrastructure disputes specialist Michelle Yeo moved up the ranks in the disputes resolution group in Brisbane, alongside Samantha Carroll in the finance regulatory team and litigator Tamara Lutvey in the employment team.

Finally, the sole promotion in the firm’s Madrid office, which saw its asset management and investment funds practice head depart in February for local rival Pérez-Llorca, went to tax lawyer Ricardo García-Borregón. 

Karen Davies, who last year became the first woman to be elected as Ashurst’s global chair, described the new partners as “an outstanding group of lawyers with exceptional talent, skill and experience.”

"This is the largest cohort of new partners in our history, reflecting our continued commitment to invest in the future of our firm and demonstrating the confidence we have about the growth opportunities that lie ahead," she added. 

Ashurst, which last July reported a 10% revenue increase in the 12 months to the end of April to £711m against a 15% rise in PEP to just over £1m, has made a number of lateral hires over the past year. Among them was disputes partner Olivier Dorgan, who joined in Paris last April from Hughes Hubbard & Reed alongside two associates, while in May derivatives lawyer Julia Lu moved over in New York from Crowell & Moring shortly after securities partner Lloyd Harmetz joined the office from Morrison & Foerster

The firm also bolstered its Australian disputes practice last year with the hire of construction arbitration specialist Matthew Blycha, who had previously been the managing partner of HFW’s Perth office. 

A full list of the promotions is as follows: 

Nathan Bellgrove, Ashurst Advance Delivery, Sydney

Richard Bulmore, RSSG, London

Samantha Carroll, Finance Regulatory, Brisbane 

Francesca Downes, Corporate Transactions, London

Ricardo García-Borregón, Tax, Madrid

Jacob Gold, Corporate Transactions, London

Laura Hillhouse, Transport & Infrastructure, Sydney

Briony Holcombe, Global Loans, London

Campbell Johnston, Global Loans, Melbourne

Joanna Lawrence, IP/Media, Melbourne

Tamara Lutvey, Employment, Brisbane

Gwladys Ngo Tedga Yagla, Ashurst Risk Advisory, Melbourne

Samuel Outtridge, Transport & Infrastructure, London

Matthew Pentecost, Global Loans, London

Annamaria Pinzuti, Energy & Resources, Milan

Dallan Pitman, Corporate Transactions, London

Annalisa Santini, Global Loans, Milan

Morgan Spain, Dispute Resolution, Melbourne

Thomas Storer, Dispute Resolution, Sydney

Ciaran Vinaccia, Global Markets, London

Tim West, Dispute Resolution, London

Steve Whittington, Tax, Sydney

Molly Woods, Corporate Transactions, London

Matthew Worsfold, Ashurst Risk Advisory, Sydney

Melissa Yeo, Dispute Resolution, Brisbane

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