Baker McKenzie adds construction and energy partner duo in Sydney from Norton Rose Fulbright

NRF’s Australia construction and engineering team lead Emanuel Confos to move over alongside Harriet Oldmeadow

Baker McKenzie has added a pair of partners for its construction, projects and energy team in Sydney from rival Norton Rose Fulbright (NRF).

Emanuel Confos, who led NRF’s Australia construction and engineering team, is set to join Bakers along with Harriet Oldmeadow. Several members of their team will join them for the move, according to Financial Review, which first reported the hires, though both firms declined to give details. 

A Bakers spokesperson commented: “We are excited to welcome two experienced major energy and infrastructure projects partners to our firm and further enhance our offering across these fast-growing sectors. 

“These appointments mark the next phase in the firm’s Australian strategy – adding depth and talent to our existing team in targeted industries and sectors of increasing demand and client need.”

Confos brings extensive experience advising developers on D&C (design and construct) and EPC (engineer, procure and construct) contract matters across the energy and infrastructure sectors and also acts for clients in large scale complex construction litigation. He has been a partner at NRF for the past eight years, where he has worked with clients including FRV Dubai, Wollongong Hospital and Brookfield Multiplex Constructions, the latter of which he acted for in its landmark 7-0 appeal to the High Court of Australia. 

Earlier he was a partner at Australian heavyweight Gilbert + Tobin. 

Oldmeadow became a partner at NRF 18 months ago, having rejoined the firm in 2015 after a two-year stint at Gilbert + Tobin. Her practice focuses on construction litigation and dispute resolution before superior State and Federal Courts in Australia and she is also involved in the drafting and negotiating of construction contracts for clients. She worked with Confos on the Brookfield appeal to the High Court and has acted for renewable energy developers and contractors in arbitration over the construction of large scale renewable infrastructure. 

At Bakers the pair will join an Australia construction team noted by Chambers for its expertise in delivering energy-related construction projects, particularly in the renewables space. The team is led by Melbourne-based partner Anthony Whelan; key clients include ALDI, Siemens and mRNA Victoria. 

News of the hires follows Bakers appointing Sydney-based partner Anne-Marie Allgrove as its new Australia managing partner last December. Allgrove, who chairs the firm’s global IP, data and technology practice, will take over next week from Anthony Foley. 

An NRF spokesperson confirmed the duo’s departure, the date of which is yet to be confirmed, adding: “We will shortly be welcoming new additions to our national projects and construction team in Sydney, including a respected senior partner. This follows the addition of partner Ben Bradstreet in March this year.”

Bradstreet joined the firm in Perth from King Wood & Mallesons. 

Last week, Ashurst bolstered its M&A offering in Australia with the hire of partner Neil Pathak and Susannah Macknay from rival firm Gilbert + Tobin (G+T). 

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